Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone scraps ban on pregnant schoolgirls going to school

In a major policy shift, the government of Sierra Leone this week announced that it had agreed to change the law and allow pregnant schoolgirls to continue attending school. The issue has divided society in that country, with the previous government taking a strong stand against mothers-to-be being permitted to go on attending lessons in mainstream schools. However, the new government that took office about two years ago has shown itself willing to make changes on the issue.

Read government announcement

Link to AfricanLII story on ECOWAS Court decision 

'Satan did it', claims rape accused

Mothers have been warned by a senior judge from Sierra Leone to be ‘doubly careful’ about the safety of their daughters. They should be ‘less trusting’ of others and should ‘prod on with love’ if they notice any change in their children, to find out the reason for the altered behaviour. This might help avert would-be rapists. Judge Reginald Fynn made these comments after finding a man guilty of raping a six-year-old who had been left in his care by the girl’s mother.

Read judgment

This is the first time I have read judgment in a rape trial heard by the High Court of Sierra Leone. There are several ways in which it is different from cases in other jurisdictions involving child rape or ‘defilement’ as it is sometimes called, and some of these differences are worth pointing out.

African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights Organises Sensitisation Seminars to Sierra Leone and Liberia Next Month

Arusha, 24 July 2018: The African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights (AfCHPR) will undertake sensitisation missions to the Republic of Sierra Leone from 2 to 3 August 2018 and to the Republic of Liberia from 6 to 7 August 2018.

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