National, News

High Court acquits activist

By Manas James

A High Court in the Jonglei State capital, Bor, on Monday cleared a civil society activist of impersonation charges after a year of trial.

Bol Deng Bol who heads the Jonglei Civil Society Network (JCSN) has been locked in a legal battle with his predecessor, David Garang Goc since last January after the latter accused Activist Bol of impersonating him as the leader of the network, triggering the legal battle.

It all started when Bol was elected as the network’s leader in an election boycotted by him and whose results were immediately dismissed by Garang Goc.

On Monday, in a court ruling seen by No. 1 Citizen Daily Newspaper, John Yel Aleu, a High Court judge in Bor, said Activist Bol was innocent and that charges brought against him under section 106 of the Penal Code Act 2008 lacks substance.

Justice John Yel Aleu, who also serves as the president of the High Court in Jonglei, based his decision under section 226/1 of the Criminal Procedure Act 2008.

Responding to the court’s verdict, Bol Deng Bol, said the decision by the High Court is long overdue.

“In January 2022, what happened was that the JCSN General Assembly conducted elections in the absence of Garang Goc because Garang refused to attend. So, I was accused of having been elected unduly,” he narrated. “This court ruling that elections were right and in order is welcomed.”

He added, “The court ruled that there was no substantial evidence to back the accusation. In fact, this is a long overdue. The court having come with this verdict is a relief. We appreciate that the court recognized the evidence provided.”

Garang was not immediately available for comment.

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