14th April 2024
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CES lawmakers term Kalisto’s detention ‘flagrant disregard for rule of law’

Author: Staff reporter | Published: Thursday, April 4, 2024

FILE PHOTO: Former Mayor of Juba, Kalisto Lado - Courtesy

Central Equatoria state parliament has condemned the ‘arbitrary’ arrest and detention of the former mayor of Juba, Kalisto Ladu and calls for his immediate release or fair trial.

It is now four days since Kalisto, an outspoken political figure, was whisked away near his home, and neither his family knows his whereabouts nor has any relevant authority publicly commented about the matter.

The U.S. Embassy in Juba condemned his arrest on Wednesday, terming it an indication of the transitional government’s failure to guarantee civic and political space in the country.

Meanwhile, the lawmakers said the arrest is a direct violation of fundamental human rights and democratic principles as enshrined in the Constitution.

The legislators also term the incident as a flagrant disregard for the rule of law and the suppression of dissenting voices.

“We are deeply troubled by the recent events that have transgressed the principles of justice, freedom of expression and civil liberties within our jurisdiction,” the lawmakers said in a press statement.

The statement was signed by the state parliament speaker, Peter Wani Elia Kulang.

“This arrest comes in direct violation of fundamental human rights and democratic principles as enshrined in the constitution of our nation.”

They stated that the arrest of Kalisto sets a dangerous precedent and undermines the progress towards a truly democratic society.

“Mr. Kalisto detention is particularly alarming as it appears to be a targeted reprisal for exercising his inherent right to express his opinions a matter to public concern,”

The lawmakers said the arbitrary and detention without due process has no place in a democratic society governed by the rule of law.

They call upon relevant authorities to conduct a thorough and fair investigation into Kalist’s arrest, holding accountable those responsible for this action.

The legislators are urging immediate action including the release of Kalisto Ladu or subjecting him to a fair trial within 24 hours.

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