Golden Lead case drags on, as frustrations mount
Golden Lead fishmeal processing factory in Gunjur
The case of Gunjur Vs Golden Lead Company resumed on Monday, 15th January at the high court in Banjul with an adjournment, as frustrations mount with protracted litigation.
A reliable legal source privy to court proceedings, reported that the matter against Golden Lead came up at the High Court on Monday, 15th January and was subsequently adjourned to the earliest suitable date for Court diary of Tuesday, 20th February 2018 for definite settlement or definite Pre-trial Conference.
According to our source, “if settlement is reached, terms are to be embodied in a Consent Judgment that is as binding as if the matter went to a full trial. “ It could be recalled that when the case was called at the high court on Thursday, 21st December 2017, the judge advised a meeting between both parties in preliminary exploration of the viability of an out-of-court settlement. In the event the parties don’t agree on settlement, the judge postulated the case will then be heard bi-weekly until final adjudication.
This followed the rejection of Golden Lead Company through their Lawyer that the Environmental groups pursuing a legal case against them have any custody of the Bolongfenyo protected area. In a deposition by lawyer Lamin S Camara of Dandimayo Chambers, the company questions the locus standi of the plaintiff for taking action in respect of the area.
The coastal settlement of Gunjur has been involved a legal battle with a Chinese fish processing company accused of environmental degradation. The matter was initially taken to court by National Environmental Agency (NEA) early last year , but the defendant reached an out of court settlement with admission of liability.
However, this failed to spell an end to its legal travails with the filling of a civil suit by Concern Environmental Group (Gunjur), Gunjur Environmental Protection And Development Group (GEPDG), supported and financed by the newly established Gunjur Development Association (GDA).