Court Matters

GOLDEN LEAD CASE MENTIONED AT BRIKAMA MAGISTRATE’S COURT

By Lamin E. Fatty, Mamos Tv, Gambia

The legal suit filed by the Gambia’s National Environment Agency (NEA) against Golden Lead, a Chinese company located in Gunjur, Kombo South District, was yesterday mentioned at the Brikama Magistrate’s Court, presided over by Magistrate Momodou L.K Bojang.

The Chinese Company, which is charged with four counts of offences, ranging from unregulated production, to failing to respect the terms of their agreement with government on their operation, among others, was represented by Lawyer M. Drammeh whilst the prosecution was led by Momodou F.S Bojang.

According to the particulars of offence on count one, the Golden Lead company wilfully discharged waste water from their fish processing plant at the Gunjur beach in the year 2016, 2017, unknown to the relevant authority, the NEA, contrary to Section 56 (1) (b) and (c) of the NEA Act, 1994.

On count two, the company is alleged to have discharged waste water from their fish processing plant into the sea through connected pipes without authority, in the year 2016,2017, into the sea at the Gunjur beach, contrary to Section 57 (1) (a) of the NEA act.

On Count three the company is alleged to have discharged waste water from their fish processing plant into the sea through connected pipes without authority, in the year 2016,2017, into the sea at the Gunjur beach, contrary to Section 57 (1) (a) of the NEA Act.

On count four, they are charged with failing to keep records of their activities, products and waste, required to be kept by the company under this Act in the year 2016/2017, contrary to Section 54 (1) (b) of the NEA Act.

The case was adjourned to 4th July, 2017 for hearing.

In Ex-NIA 9 Case Court, Gives Indefinite Hearing to Prosecution

  

The High Court in Banjul, presided over by Justice Kumba Sillah-Camara, has given the prosecution (in the Solo Sandeng murder case) a last chance to proceed with the prosecution of the 9 former officials of the defunct National Intelligence Agency (NIA). This development followed an application for an adjournment made by the State Counsel A Yakubu on the grounds that he did not come with any witness to the court. The State Counsel said that he thought that the case was slated for mention rather than hearing.

Reacting to the application, Lawyer C.E Mene, defence counsel for the first accused person, Yankuba Badjie, objected and said that the application is completely devoid of any merit. He further stated that even though adjournment is at the discretion of the court the party making an application should advance cogent reasons for doing so.

He queried that the progress of the case has stalled and it is always at the instance of the prosecution. He therefore urged the court to compel the prosecution to proceed or in the alternative strikeout the case and accordingly discharge the accused persons.

Lawyer Edward A Gomez, defence counsel for the second accused person, Louise Richards Leese Gomez, in his reaction, associated himself with the submissions of Lawyer Mene and added that the issues of fundamental human rights is clearly enshrined in Chapter 4 Section 17 (1) of the Constitution and those rights are sacrosanct and not negotiable.

He argued that the prosecution in the previous adjourned date requested for time to put their house in other and the court granted the application and gave 2 weeks so it is an abomination for the same prosecution to come back and make such application in court. He equally urged the court to strikeout the case and discharge the accused persons accordingly as they are like everyone else and deserve protection by law.

Lawyer Moses B J Richards, defence counsel for the third accused person, Sheikh Omar Jeng, also added his voice in objecting to the application and outlined that he had always brought to the attention of the court that the Justice Minister during a press conference in March did say that his Ministry was not prepared to take up the prosecution of this case and that the state/prosecution is still suffering from that unpreparedness.

He also urged the court to consider granting the accused persons bail in the interim pending the time the state is willing and prepared to proceed with the prosecution of the accused persons.

Legal Aid Lawyer S Kennedy also on the other hand applied for the court to for-close the prosecution. Lawyer U Achibue adopted the submissions of the previous defence lawyers.

Meanwhile, the State Counsel A Yakubu in response intimated to the court that the application of the prosecution is not deliberate as they are prosecutors and not persecutors.

At that juncture, the presiding judge ruled that the court is minded of the gravity of the offences and in so doing she granted the adjournment for definite hearing. and the case was adjourned to the 29th May 2017.

The accused persons, namely; Yankuba Badjie, Louise Richards Leese Gomez, Sheikh Omar Jeng, Baboucarr Sallah, Yusupha Jammeh, Haruna Susso, Tamba Mansary, Lamin Darboe and Lamin Lang Sanyang are jointly and severally charged with offences ranging from conspiracy to commit murder, murder, assault causing actual bodily harm, conspiracy to commit a misdemeanour, forgery and making documents without authority.

Ex-President Jammeh’s Assets Frozen

       
Honourable Abubacarr Tambedou, the Attorney General and Minister of Justice has revealed that the government of The Gambia has obtained a court order to freeze or place a temporary hold on the locally known assets and companies directly associated with the former president Yahya Jammeh.

He made this revelation at a press conference held at his office in Banjul, during which he disclosed that the freezing order affects, 131 landed properties held in the personal name of former President Yahya Jammeh or companies directly associated with him.

He said 88 different bank accounts held in the personal name of former President Yahya Jammeh or held in the names of organizations directly associated with him; 14 companies purportedly belonging to him or directly associated with him (former President Yahya Jammeh); a large number of animals and livestock purportedly belonging to him (former President Yahya Jammeh), are all frozen.

According to the Justice Minister the application for the freezing order was necessitated by the discovery of unauthorized withdrawals of millions of dalasis and foreign currencies by former President Yahya Jammeh. He further illustrated that preliminary investigations have revealed that between 2006 and 2017, former President Yahya Jammeh personally or under his instructions directed the unlawful withdrawal of at least D189, 000, 000.00 from funds belonging to the Social Security and Housing Finance Corporation. He added that between 2013 and 2017, former President Yahya Jammeh personally or under his instructions directed the unlawful withdrawal of at least US $50,000,000 from Special Projects Fund and International Gateway Accounts at the Central Bank of The Gambia.

He explained that these are only preliminary findings at this stage and all indications are that these discoveries are just a tip of the iceberg. “The freezing order is therefore meant to prevent former President Yahya Jammeh from liquidating or dissipating assets held in his personal name or his assets held in the names of his close associates or agents so as not to cause prejudice to the State should there be adverse findings made against him by a court of competent jurisdiction which may require the recovery of assets and monies from him by the State,” he said.

Minister Tambedou indicated that this list of assets frozen is by no means exhaustive, as investigations are still ongoing and if they find other assets purportedly belonging to former President Yahya Jammeh or to companies or organizations directly associated with him in this country which are not already included in this freezing order, they shall also take immediate appropriate action.

He said: “We therefore request anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of any assets of former President Yahya Jammeh or of companies or organizations directly associated with him to come forward and share this information with the nearest police station.” He then went on to warn that anyone who is in possession of assets purportedly belonging to former President Yahya Jammeh and fails to disclose this, may be committing an offence.

“We therefore urge you to approach the nearest police station within 48 hours after this press briefing to report this information,” the Justice Minister warned. He said they are finalizing the draft terms of reference for the establishment of a Commission of Inquiry to look into the financial and business related activities of former President Yahya Jammeh.

Ex-President Jammeh’s Assets Frozen


Honourable Abubacarr Tambedou, the Attorney General and Minister of Justice has revealed that the government of The Gambia has obtained a court order to freeze or place a temporary hold on the locally known assets and companies directly associated with the former president Yahya Jammeh.

He made this revelation at a press conference held at his office in Banjul, during which he disclosed that the freezing order affects, 131 landed properties held in the personal name of former President Yahya Jammeh or companies directly associated with him.

He said 88 different bank accounts held in the personal name of former President Yahya Jammeh or held in the names of organizations directly associated with him; 14 companies purportedly belonging to him or directly associated with him (former President Yahya Jammeh); a large number of animals and livestock purportedly belonging to him (former President Yahya Jammeh), are all frozen.

According to the Justice Minister the application for the freezing order was necessitated by the discovery of unauthorized withdrawals of millions of dalasis and foreign currencies by former President Yahya Jammeh. He further illustrated that preliminary investigations have revealed that between 2006 and 2017, former President Yahya Jammeh personally or under his instructions directed the unlawful withdrawal of at least D189, 000, 000.00 from funds belonging to the Social Security and Housing Finance Corporation. He added that between 2013 and 2017, former President Yahya Jammeh personally or under his instructions directed the unlawful withdrawal of at least US $50,000,000 from Special Projects Fund and International Gateway Accounts at the Central Bank of The Gambia.

He explained that these are only preliminary findings at this stage and all indications are that these discoveries are just a tip of the iceberg. “The freezing order is therefore meant to prevent former President Yahya Jammeh from liquidating or dissipating assets held in his personal name or his assets held in the names of his close associates or agents so as not to cause prejudice to the State should there be adverse findings made against him by a court of competent jurisdiction which may require the recovery of assets and monies from him by the State,” he said.

Minister Tambedou indicated that this list of assets frozen is by no means exhaustive, as investigations are still ongoing and if they find other assets purportedly belonging to former President Yahya Jammeh or to companies or organizations directly associated with him in this country which are not already included in this freezing order, they shall also take immediate appropriate action.

He said: “We therefore request anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of any assets of former President Yahya Jammeh or of companies or organizations directly associated with him to come forward and share this information with the nearest police station.” He then went on to warn that anyone who is in possession of assets purportedly belonging to former President Yahya Jammeh and fails to disclose this, may be committing an offence.

“We therefore urge you to approach the nearest police station within 48 hours after this press briefing to report this information,” the Justice Minister warned. He said they are finalizing the draft terms of reference for the establishment of a Commission of Inquiry to look into the financial and business related activities of former President Yahya Jammeh.

Arrest Warrant For Deyda Hydara's Murderers

 

Principal Magistrate Isatou Janneh-Njie of the Banjul Magistrates' Court has issued an arrest warrant for the alleged murderers of the late renowned journalist Deyda Hydara. This was made at the request of the Police Prosecution Unit today.

The late Deyda Hydara’s suspected murderers; Major Sanna Manjang and ex-army Colonel Kawsu Camara, widely known as Bombardier are charged with conspiracy to commit murder and murder, all contrary to the Laws of The Gambia.
It is alleged that the duo sometime in the year 2004, within the Kanifing Municipality and diverse places in The Gambia, unlawfully conspired amongst themselves to wit murder. It is further alleged that the duo unlawfully caused the death of journalist Deyda Hydara by shooting him with a gun on his forehead. The police have said that the accused persons are currently out of the country as a result they made an application under Section 67 of the Criminal Procedure Code for the court to issue an arrest warrant against the duo.

Ousman Sonko, 8 Others Charged for Allegedly Killing Daba Marenah & Co

 

Ousman Sonko, the former minister of Interior and eight soldiers were on Thursday charged with murder, at the Banjul Magistrates’ Court before Principal Magistrate Isatou Janneh-Njie. The accused persons were said to have allegedly murdered the former director general of the defunct National Intelligence Agency (NIA) now changed to State Intelligence Services (SIS), Daba Marenah and eight others namely; Manlafi Corr, Lt. Ebou Lowe, Alieu Ceesay, WO2 Alpha Bah, Julia and Masireh Jammeh by shooting them with a gun.

The accused persons who are currently at large are Ousman Sonko, Lt. Yusupha Sanneh, Sgt. Sainey Jammeh Aka Chess, Saikou Jallow, Lt. Micheal Sang Correa, Captain Micheal Jatta, Major Sanna Manjang, Major Mustapha Sanneh and Borra Colley.

When the case was called, the police prosecutor Inspector S. Sanyang applied under Section 69(b) of the Criminal Procedure Code (CPC) for the court to issue a bench warrant for the arrest of the accused persons. He equally cited Section 62(1) of the CPC to have the matter transferred to the Superior Court that has the jurisdiction to try the case.

More Evidence In Ex-NIA Officials’ Trial

 

 

The prosecution team in the Solo Sandeng murder trial involving 9 former officials of the former National Intelligence Agency (NIA), now changed to State Intelligence Services (SIS), has brought in its second prosecution witness (PW2) in the witness box who has led more evidences in the case.

While giving evidence at the High court in Banjul, presided over by Justice Kumba Sillah-Camara, PW2 who identified himself as Omar Bojang, said that he is the director of West Coast Region at the National Intelligence Agency and that he was previously the director of Technical Services too.

He informed the court that being a director working directly under the 1st accused person, Yankuba Badjie, who was the director general then at the NIA, he (PW2) cannot go home when the 1st accused is still in office. 

He further informed the court that sometime in April 2016, he was in the office and he went to the 1st accused to know if he (1st accused) was ready to go. He said on that particular day, he found the 1st accused sitting on a chair opposite his office, so he (PW2) sat besides him.

PW2 Bojang revealed that while sitting he heard people crying, so he enquired from the 1st accused who are those crying, and the first accused (Badjie) responded they are the UDP protesters. He added that he told the 1st accused that what was happening to those people may backfire but he realized through the 1st accused person’s physical expression that he was not happy with his statement. 

Mr Bojang said that later the 1st accused demanded for Solo Sandeng to be brought for interrogation and when Solo was brought he fell down to the ground and the 1st accused asked them (those that brought Solo) to take him (Solo) under the fan at the interrogation unit as he (Solo) must have fainted. He said after that the 1st accused person left and he (PW2) also left because his boss had already gone home.

During cross-examination by Lawyer Mene who is representing the 1st accused, PW2 disclosed that he went home at around 1am towards 2am. He added that he does not know if the fan was meant to help Solo Sandeng wake up. 

Bojang said he does not have first aid experience and that he does not have a qualification on psychology. He further said that he works for the NIA for 25 years now and when he told the 1st accused that what was happening to the UDP suspects may back fire he was just trying to save the 1st accused but he does not have personal relations with him (1st accused). 

The case was at that juncture adjourned to tomorrow at noon.

 

Six Gambians appointed Superior Court Judges!

Six Gambians have been appointed as judges of the Superior Courts of The Gambia by President Adama Barrow.

The appointments were pursuant to the recommendation of the Judicial Service Commission made on 14 and 16 March 2017.

The appointed Judges are Justice Cherno Sulayman Jallow, QC as Justice of the Supreme Court, Justice Mary Mam Yassin Sey as Justice of the Supreme Court, Justice Naceesay Sallah Wadda as Justice of the Court of Appeal, Justice Omar Momodou Musa Njie as Justice of the Court of Appeal, whilst Zainab Jawara Alami serves as Judge of the High Court and Sainabou Wadda Cisse as Judge of the High Court.

Cherno Sulayman Jallow (Justice of the Supreme Court) has 28 years’ post call experience as a lawyer and has once worked at the Attorney General’s Chambers as Chief Parliamentary Counsel.

He served as Attorney General of the British Virgin Islands from 1999 to 2007 and he is currently the Director of Policy Research and Statistics of the British Virgin Islands Financial Services Commission.

Justice Mary Mam Yassin Sey has 28 years’ post call experience as a lawyer and was the first female appointed Judge in The Gambia.

Justice Mam Yassin Sey worked under the UN and ECOWAS in Liberia as legal adviser in the office of the Special Representative of the Executive Secretary of the ECOWAS (SRES).

She served as Judge in Swaziland and Sierra Leone respectively and she is currently Justice of the Supreme Court of Republic of Vanuatu.

Justice Naceesay Sallah Wadda has 18 years’ post call experience as a lawyer and had served in various capacities including as Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions and Acting Solicitor General and Legal Secretary at the Attorney General’s Chambers.

She was appointed as High Court Judge in 2007 and had served as Justice of The Gambia Court of Appeal from 2011 to 2016.

Justice Omar Momodou Musa Njie has over 25 years post call experience as a private legal practitioner and as a lecturer in Civil Procedure, Gambia Law School from 2014 to date.

Mrs Sainabou Wadda Cisse has 15 years’ post call experience as a lawyer and has once served as a senior Magistrate and Chairperson of the Kanifing Industrial Tribunal.

She served as the head of Legal Affairs and Compliance at the former Prime Bank (G) Ltd and currently the head of Legal Affairs and Company Secretary at the Guaranty Trust Bank (G) Ltd.

Zainab Jawara Alami has 16 years’ post call experience as a lawyer and once worked as curator of Interstate Estate Department and State Counsel (Criminal Division) at the Attorney General’s Chambers.

She is currently Deputy Director (Legal) and Head of Legal Unit at the Gambia Revenue Authority (GRA). The Point Gambia report!

 

Nigerian ex-oil minister charged with money laundering: crimes agency

A former Nigeria oil minister and three election officials have been charged with money-laundering. Ex-minister Diezani Alison-Madueke was accused of bribing the officials before the 2015 presidential election that saw President Muhammadu Buhari emerging as winner.

The bribes amounted to almost N265m ( £694,493; $866,865), according to the Premium Times newspaper.

The three officials appeared at the Federal High Court in Lagos on 5 April. One pleased guilty and the other two not guilty.

Madueke was not in court and a charge sheet described her as being "still at large."

Madueke served under President Goodluck Jonathan, who lost to Buhari in 2015. She was arrested in London in 2015 on suspicion of bribery and money laundering, charges she has always denied.

 

More on Alison-Madueke and corruption in Nigeria

Alison-Madueke, who became the first female president of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) in 2014, was arrested days after Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari appointed himself as the country's oil minister, after he vowed he would recover millions of dollars worth of funds he alleged were stolen during previous administrations.

The leader also alleged some 250,000 barrels of Nigerian crude oil are stolen every day and sold to other countries at higher prices. In order to stop illicit activities in the oil industry, Buhari replaced the whole board of the state-run Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and temporarily banned some 113 vessels from taking crude oil from Nigerian ports.

While Alison-Madueke was in office, former governor of Nigeria Central Bank Sanusi Lamido Sanusi was suspended after he claimed $20bn (£12bn) of oil revenue "went missing" from state oil company Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).

According to the Premium Times, Alison-Madueke – who has been dubbed "one of the most powerful officials of President Goodluck Jonathan" – admitted to spending $3.5bn (£2.3bn) of Nigeria's money without budgetary approval in February 2014.

During her time in the role, she supported the unpopular attempt by Jonathan in 2012 to end fuel subsidies, arguing it posed a financial burden on the government's finances. The government backtracked on its decision following rallies that caused at least 16 deaths.

JSDA demands Justice For Fallen Brothers

 

The Jerreh Sittanunku Development Association (JSDA) wishes to register its solidarity with the families of all victims of Sittanunku origin concerning the brutality and injustices that they have been subjected to by the government of Yahya Jammeh. It is public knowledge that Sittanunku village, Upper Niumi District, North Bank Region, is part of many settlements that suffered miserably during the 22 years misrule of the previous regime.

Three gallant sons of village who diligently served in the national army were killed extra judicially and many others forced to go on exile after being accused by Jammeh and his thugs for plotting to overthrow his government.

They include the following:

Cadet Amadou Sillah, a brilliant soldier accused of allegedly taking part in the purported attempted coup of 11 November 1994. He was killed without availing him the opportunity to a free and fair trial before a competent court of law thereby violating his human rights.

Staff Sergeant Almamo Manneh, a key figure in the July 1994 revolution, was also accused of plotting a coup against Jammeh together with Lieutenant Sanneh in January 2000. He was also manhandled and subsequently killed without availing him opportunity to a free and fair trial before a competent court of law thereby violating his human rights.

Lieutenant Lamin F Jammeh (LF Jammeh), another key figure of the July 1994 revolution, was also accused of taking part in the 11thNovember 1994 coup and the attack on Kartong military barracks. He was brought before a law court and subsequently sentenced to life imprisonment. To the disappointment of all, he was executed during Jammeh’s August 2012 execution of the nine prison inmates at Mile Two. He was therefore killed without availing him opportunity to a free and fair death sentence hearing before a competent court of law thereby violating his human rights.

These are different from the myriad of sons of Sittanunku who fled The Gambia of Yahya Jammeh due to threats on their lives. These include Ebrima (Borry) Manneh who was forced to leave Gambia since 1994, after escaping an attack at his house in Brikama by soldiers from the State House. It is against this background that the entire membership of JSDA welcomes the fall of APRC regime and the keen commitment demonstrated so far by the new government to set up a Truth and Reconciliation Commission which will investigate the causes and consequences of these atrocities and where appropriate, offer reparations for families of the victims.

Similarly, we also appreciate the efforts being made by the government to investigate all other arbitrary killings and disappearances that took place during the Jammeh-era. However, though we are cognizant of the fact that certain criminal investigations takes time, we are calling on the government to expedite the investigations with a view to bring the perpetrators to book because justice delayed is justice denied.

The people of Sittanunku, The Gambia and indeed, all human right defenders the world over want to see that justice is done and justice is served to the families of victims all over the country. This is important because these families have suffered so long since the demise of their loved ones and breadwinners.

We therefore plead with the new government and the international community to consider the plight of all concerned families by bringing those responsible for these heinous crimes to justice and ensure that all beneficiary families receive fair compensations for their forever lost loved ones.

It is in recognition of the above that we stand together as people of Sittanunku and The Gambia, united in solidarity with the families of our fallen countrymen and women and demand that justice be seen to be done and be done expeditiously.

About

JSDA Jerreh Sittanunku Development Association (JSDA) is a registered non-profit, nonreligious and non-partisan community development organisation in Niumi Sittanunku, Upper Niumi District in North Bank Region. The association was formed by people of Nuimi Sittanunku decent both in the Kombos and Sittanunku about three years ago.

The association works to, among other things, support socio-economic development of the Village in all areas including education, health, agriculture, culture, and sports. JSDA also hopes to strengthen the bond of unity, mutual understanding, friendship and cooperation among youth of the village, and complement efforts of government and the village authority in the promotion of a just and prosperous rural community. The association has a board of advisers whose mandates include providing strategic guidance and thoughtful advice to ensure that the association remains true to its aims and objectives.

Signed

JSDA Executive Committee.

 

 

APRC to Withdraw Election Petition

 
Lawyer Edward A Gomez, the attorney for the Alliance for Patriotic Reorientation and Construction party (APRC) has told the Supreme Court of the Gambia that he received instructions from his client to withdraw the election petition earlier filed after the 1st December 2016 Presidential elections.
The Supreme Court panel of five judges comprises of the following; Hassan B Jallow, the Chief Justice of The Gambia, Justice Nicholas Colin Browne-Marke of Sierra Leone, Justice Cherno Sulayman Jallow, Justice Mary Mam Yassin Sey and Abubacarr Datti Yahaya of Nigeria. This sitting of the court is the first in the new dispensation since the court sessions were put to a halt in June 2015.
When the case was called, Lawyer Gomez informed the panel of judges that he has instructions from his client to withdraw the case as a result of which he had filed a notice of withdrawal. He added that the withdrawal is in the best interest of the country and the people living in the country and that it is to ensure peace, stability and prosperity of The Gambia and her people.
The Chief Justice Hassan B Jallow was quick to bring to the attention of Lawyer Gomez the procedure that is required for the withdrawal of election petitions which he said is stated at rule 27 of the Election Petition Rules and it states; “Notice of an application for leave to withdraw a petition shall be in writing and signed by the ground on which the application is intended to be supported and may be in the form set out in Form 4.” 
Upon hearing the guidance of the court, Lawyer Gomez said that under the circumstance he would apply for an adjournment to regularize the records. State counsel Binga D for the 2nd respondent outlined that he was not objecting to the application of withdrawal intended. The court then proceeded to adjourn the matter to the 24th May 2017
The same circumstance arise in the sister petitions namely the case of Yahya A J J Jammeh Versus Independent Electoral Commission, The Returning Officer, Adama Barrow and Attorney General and the case of Yankuba Colley Versus the earlier mentioned respondents. Both cases are also adjourned to the 24th May 2017.

on.

 

Former Interior Minister Ousman Sonko, Others Wanted​

ALERT! ALERT!

ARREST WARRANT FOR OUSMAN SONKO ( Former Interior Minister), GENERAL SULAYMAN BADJIE AND OTHERS FOR THE ALLEGED KILLINGS AND OTHER CRIMINAL ACTS.

PROSECUTORS OF THE GAMBIA POLICE FORCE TODAY SECURED AN ARREST WARRANT FROM THE BANJUL MAGISTRATES COURT FOR THE FOLLOWING PERSONS AND OTHER ALARGE. THE MEN MUST BE ARRESTED ANYWHERE SEEN BOTH WITHIN AND OUTSIDE THE GAMBIA. TO BE ON THE SAFE SIDE, CONTACT THE NEAREST POLICE STATION ONCE SITED. 

1.OUSMAN SONKO ( Former Interior Minister)
2.GENERAL SULAYMAN BADJIE
3.EX COLONEL SOLO BOJANG
4.MAJOR SANNA MANJANG
5.GENERAL BORA COLLEY
6.COLONEL KAWSU CAMARA ALIAS BOMBARDIER
7. MAJOR NUHA BADJIE

Source: Gambia Police Force

on.

 

Defense lawyers object to High Court jurisdiction to hear NIA 9 case

Defence Lawyer C.E Mene has objected to the High Court’s Jurisdiction to hear the alleged murder case involving  the 9 former officials of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) on the grounds that it does not follow due process of the law.

The nine officials, namely, Yankuba Badjie, the former Director General of the NIA, Louis Richard Leese Gomez, Sheikh Omar Jeng, Baboucarr Sallah, Yusupha Jammeh, Haruna Susso, Tamba Mansaray, Lamin Darboe and Lamin Lang Sanyang, are jointly charged for their alleged involvement in the killing of UDP's Solo Sanding while in state custody.

They are charged with twelve counts of criminal offences ranging from conspiracy, to murder, assault causing actual bodily harm, conspiracy to commit misdemeanor, forgery and making documents without authority, contrary to the Laws of The Gambia.

Lawyer C E Mene who represented Yankuba Badjie, submitted that since the prosecution has now filed an information before the court, he is applying for the court to strike out the previous charge that emanated from the Banjul Magistrates' Court. He said if they have two processes before the court it will be termed as an abuse of court process.

The prosecution team led by the deputy director of Public Prosecution (DDPP) did not object and the previous charge was then struck out by the presiding judge.

Just after the charges were read out to the accused persons in other for them to take their plea, defence counsel C.E Mene said now that the charges have been read to the accused persons, they wish to make an objection to the jurisdiction of the court to entertain the case.

“I am seeking the order of this court to strike out this case,” he said.

DDPP M.B Abubacarr said counsel Mene is objecting to the charges of the court but should not go into the summons on notice that was served on them in the morning.

Counsel Mene reacted that he is not proceeding with the summons on notice but objecting to the charges. He said they are objecting to the court’s jurisdiction to entertain the case on the grounds that the due Constitutional process was not followed.

Defence counsel D Dago for the 9th accused also brought to the attention of the court that they have a pending application before the court. The state said they have been served and that they will react to it.

The presiding judge Justice Kumba Sillah-Camara then adjourned the case to Monday 10th April, 2017 for hearing of the summons on notice.

 

State withdraws charges against Sira Wally Ndow & others


The High Court in Banjul, presided over by Justice Agbola on Tuesday discharged Sira Wally Ndow-Njai and 9 other former top officials of the Jammeh Government.

This development followed the prosecution’s move of filing a Nolle Proseque to discontinue with the prosecution of the case.

The presiding judge after hearing the submissions of the deputy director of public prosecution (DDPP) M B Abubacarr, said with regards to the Nolle Proseque filed on the 31st March 2017, the accused persons are discharged in pursuant to Section 68 of the Criminal Procedure Code.

It would be recalled that Madam Ndow-Njai, alongside Momodou O.S Badjie, Fafa Sanyang, Cherno Marenah, Seedy Kanyi, Muntaga Momodou Sallah, Momodou Taal, Louie Moses Mendy, Noah Touray and Madun Sanyang were charged with offences ranging from conspiracy, to neglect of official duty, disobedience of statutory duty, and destroying evidence.

n notice.

Six Gambians appointed Superior Court Judges!

 

The 9 former officials of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) has denied being responsible for the murder of Solo Sandeng and assault of other members the UDP during a protest held on April 14th 2016.

After the charges were read to them at the High Court in Banjul presided over by Justice Kumba Sillah-Camara, the accused persons namely; Yankuba Badjie, Louise Richards Leese Gomez, Sheikh Omar Jeng, Baboucarr Sallah, Yusupha Jammeh, Haruna Susso, Tamba Mansary, Lamin Darboe and Lamin Lang Sanyang denied the charges.

They are jointly charged with several offences ranging from conspiracy to commit murder, murder, assault causing actual bodily harm, conspiracy to commit misdemeanour, forgery and making documents without authority. They all pleaded not guilty to the charges. The accused persons then took their pleas and the presiding judge delivered a ruling on the application of the defence lawyers.

It would be recalled that the defence lawyers had earlier applied for a ruling on that whether or not the deputy director of Public Prosecution is not competent to institute a criminal case against the accused persons. The team of defence lawyers did that purposely to convince the court to strike out the case.

The judge in her ruling, stated that it is the duty of the applicants/defence to show the court that there no incumbent DPP as asserted in paragraph 5 of the Affidavit in support of the application, adding that he who asserts it must prove it. She said she agrees with the respondent/prosecution that the office of the DPP is not a one-man business that seizes to exist when he is not there.

“I hold that the case is properly instituted before me. The DDPP acted legally in instituting the case against the accused persons. I therefore hold that the application of the defence lawyers lacks merit and I dismiss it,” she remarked. The case was then adjourned to the 8th of May 2017 and the case shall proceed daily.

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Solo Sandeng Was Wrapped in a Mattress and Buried, Witness Tells Court

 

Dawda Ndure, an officer of the former National Intelligence Agency (NIA) now changed to State Intelligence Services (SIS), attached to the Counter Intelligence Unit has told Justice Kumba Sillah-Camara of the high court in Banjul that he witnessed the burial of Solo Sandeng at the NIA campus in Tanji and that Solo was buried along with a mattress and a bed sheet.

Ndure made this revelation while advancing evidence as the first prosecution witness (PW1) the multi-count charges case against the nine former NIA officers who are alleged to have been involved in the murder of Solo Sandeng while in state custody. He disclosed that the functions of his Unit is to obtain background information on people and that on the 14th April 2016, whilst at work, they were instructed to stay in the office because they were supposed to obtain back ground information on some people.

He added that after sometime, some suspects were brought to the NIA campus who were said to have taken part in the UDP protest. According to him, Yankuba Badjie and Louise Richards Leese Gomez (the 1st and 2nd accused persons respectively) walked into their office with Solo Sandeng and Nogoi Njie and briefed them to obtain information on them. He narrated that Solo Sandeng was later brought in by Sheikh Omar Jeng, Tamba Mansary (the 3rd and 7th accused persons respectively) and James Mendy. He said that his boss Sheriff Gassama then ordered him (PW1) to take a background information on Solo Sandeng.

After which he took a form and sat in front of Solo Sandeng and asked if he needed anything and Solo Sandeng requested for water which he gave to him. PW1 said that he asked him some questions according to the form and during their discussion he (Solo) highlighted some points to him (PW1) that their protest was not to unseat the government but their agenda was to march to the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) and tender a letter to the IEC which was written by the party militants. He revealed that he obtained the background information as directed after which Solo Sandeng signed the form.

es.

Signed

JSDA Executive Committee.

 

 

Defence Counsel Frowns At Sarjo Barrow’s News Presentation

 

Lawyer C.E Mene, the defence counsel for the embattled erstwhile director general of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA), Yankuba Badjie, has frowned at the way and manner in which his client’s case was broadcasted by Sarjo Barrow, a news presenter at Start FM Radio. He made this reaction during today’s sitting of the Solo Sandeng’s murder case involving of the state against nine former top officials of the NIA in which he (Lawyer Mene) is a defence counsel.

When the case was called, Lawyer Mene stood up and told the court that he had an issue of concern. He said that the defence has no problem with the wider coverage given to the ex-NIA 9 officials’ case by the media; but his client has a problem with the deliberate misrepresentation of the evidence that has been laid before the court.

He claimed that the evidence adduced in court is being misrepresented in the media and it has been brought to his attention by his client and other counsel that one Sarjo Barrow of Star FM radio has misrepresented the evidence adduced by PW2 (Omar Bojang). He further alleged that Sarjo Barrow’s broadcast was to the effect that PW2 said Yankuba Badjie was present when Solo Sandeng was been tortured which he said is a clear misrepresentation of PW2’s evidence in court.

The lawyer further said; “I humbly urge that in as much as the press is free to cover this case they should do it correctly. If this continues I will be compelled to file a contempt case against the one found wanting.”

Justice Kumba Sillah Camara, in reaction to Lawyer Mene’s assertion said that even though the record of the court is the most relevant thing in the proceedings, it should be noted that the case is still before the court so should be reported correctly in the media failure of which may have an effect on the members of the public.

At that juncture the deputy director of Public Prosecution (DDPP) M B Abubacarr informed the court that the prosecution is constrained by intervening circumstance. He went on to say that the Attorney General is carrying out the reorganization of the conduct of this case and that involves other counsel joining or been reassigned to take conduct of this case which requires a study of the case file. So he applied for a two-week adjournment in other to accommodate the AG’s intended reorganization of the case. The team of defence lawyers did not oppose to the application and the judge granted the application. The case was adjourned to the 15th May 2017 for mention, and on the 22nd May 2017 for hearing at 12noon.

 

ARREST WARRANT FOR DEYDA HYDARA’S MURDERERS

Principal Magistrate Isatou Janneh-Njie of the Banjul Magistrates’ Court has issued an arrest warrant for the alleged murderers of the late renowned journalist Deyda Hydara. This was made at the request of the Police Prosecution Unit today.

The late Deyda Hydara’s suspected murderers; Major Sanna Manjang and ex-army Colonel Kawsu Camara, widely known as Bombardier are charged with conspiracy to commit murder and murder, all contrary to the Laws of The Gambia.

It is alleged that the duo sometime in the year 2004, within the Kanifing Municipality and diverse places in The Gambia, unlawfully conspired amongst themselves to wit murder. It is further alleged that the duo unlawfully caused the death of journalist Deyda Hydara by shooting him with a gun on his forehead. The police have said that the accused persons are currently out of the country as a result they made an application under Section 67 of the Criminal Procedure Code for the court to issue an arrest warrant against the duo.

The court granted the application and added that they should be arrested forthwith for them to face justice.

It would be recalled that the veteran journalist Deyda Hydara was gunned down on December 16th, 2004 by unknown men believed to be working for the government of former President, Dictator Yahya Jammeh.

The late Deyda Hydara was the Co-proprietor and Managing Editor of The Point newspaper in The Gambia.

His stance for press freedom and democracy was unprecedented and has contributed a lot towards promoting press freedom in The Gambia. He was a role model for many journalists in the country both young and old.

Since after his killing, there has been a lot of outcry from both the Gambian media and the international community including human rights organizations and civil society groups such as the Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA), International Federation for Journalists (IFJ), Amnesty International, Article 19, Gambia Press Union, RADDHO, etc, urging the former Gambia government under ex-Dictator Yahya Jammeh to investigate and ensure that the killers of the late journalist face justice but it proved futile.

on.

 

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