The East Bank Essequibo woman, Bibi Safoora Salim, who allegedly used her Facebook page to issue a death threat against the President was granted bail in the sum of $200,000 in the Georgetown Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday as she appeared in court to face charges related to the social media post.
The 52-year-old woman appeared before Chief Magistrate Ann McClennan to answer two counts of attempting to incite racial hostility or ill will against President David Granger.
But despite the Prosecutor’s objections to bail, Salim was granted the pretrial liberty in the rare criminal case.
The Court heard that she posted messages on Facebook and through social media messaging application, WhatsApp, information that could incite racial hostility and ill will towards the President of Guyana.
Salim, who hails from Vergenoegen, East Bank Essequibo, was taken into police custody for questioning, following her Facebook post about shooting the President.
The post sparked widespread criticism and debate. She reportedly sent two photos via whatsapp, which shared similar messages.
The woman was represented by Attorney Uclin Gomes, who told the Court that his client was “technologically challenged.”
However the Prosecution strongly objected to bail and said that the defendant admitted that the computer used to make the Facebook post belonged to her and even helped investigators to gain access to the device.
The charges followed advice from the Director of Public Prosecution and 14 witnesses are reportedly lined up to testify.
According to Chapter 23 of the Act, “a person shall be guilty of an offence if he willfully excites or attempts to excite hostility or ill-will against any section of the public or against any person on the grounds of their or his race, by means of words spoken by him in a public place or spoken by him and transmitted for general reception by wireless telegraphy or telegraph; or by causing words spoken by him or by some other person to be reproduced in a public place from a record; or by means of written (including printed) matter or pictorial matter published by him”.
Any person found guilty of this offence shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine of $65,000 and to imprisonment for two years.