Accountant General, bank managers recalled at commission

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

The Accountant General, Momodou Lamin Bah, GTB MD, Bolaji Ayodele, and Skye Bank MD, Mr Doye, reappeared yesterday at the commission of inquiry looking into the assets and financial transactions of former president Yahya Jammeh.

Accountant General Momodou Lamin Bah, who took along with  him budget estimates covering 2010 through 2016 to the commission, testified that the Ministry of Petroleum had a budget for 2015 and 2016, adding that the 2015 budget was D10,304,410 and the 2016 budget was D9,151,716.

He said there was no development fund in 2015 and 2016 for the ministry, adding that he was not aware of the ministry holding a private bank account.

Mr Bah said that all the bank accounts of the Ministry of Petroleum should be authorised by the Ministry of Finance.

He explained that “below the line” account forms part of the consolidated revenue account, adding that if an account is opened independently, it does not fall on the “below the line” account.

He testified that Carnegie Minerals account and other mining accounts were not part of the “below the line” accounts.

Before testifying, Guaranty Trust Bank MD, Bolaji Ayodele, was reminded that he was recalled in relation to GNPC account.

He said they did not have GNPC account, but they have the accounts of the Ministry of Petroleum.

He adduced that the account of the Ministry of Petroleum was opened on 14 April 2015, by the former Minister of Petroleum, Sirra Wally Ndow-Njie, whose ID card was attached and was signed by the former president.

The account and bank statement of the said ministry were tendered and admitted.

Mr Ayodele stated that $3,884,655.19 was the total deposit in the account, adding that Sirra Wally Ndow-Njie collected the sum of $300,000 under the instruction of the former president.

He said that $152,000 was transferred to Global Acquisition Group in the US on 11 May 2015, and signed by Sirra Wally Ndow-Njie.

He said there was a purchase of $500,000 from the Ministry of Petroleum at the rate of D39.50 and was collected by Sanna Jarju, protocol to former president, adding that $348,000 was withdrawn by Sirra Wally Ndow-Njie and the purpose was not stated.

He adduced further that $500,000 was also withdrawn by Sirra Wally Ndow-Njie, adding that $462,500 was transferred to Belgium and converted from dollar to Euro.

He stated that on 25 June 2015, Sirra Wally Ndow-Njie withdrew $115,000 and transferred to a bank in the US, and the beneficiary was the permanent mission at the UN, adding that there was a payment of $297,000 on 20 August 2015, for state flat and was withdrawn by Sirra Wally Ndow-Njie.

A sum of $100,000 was also withdrawn by Sirra Wally Ndow-Njie on 23 December 2015, and the purpose was not stated.

He said that $200,800 was transferred to Switzerland in favour of GIA and the purpose was not stated.

Sirra Wally Ndow-Njie, he adduced, on 17 June 2016, withdrew $197,000.

At this juncture, the foreign currency transaction relating to the dollar account of the Ministry of Petroleum was tendered and admitted.

The next witness to testify was the MD of Skye Bank, Mr Doye. He was asked to produce bank information in relation to GNPC.

He told the commission that GNPC had four accounts, namely dalasi, pound and two dollars accounts, adding that the dalasi account was opened on 3 January 2012 by Tenengba Jaiteh and Momodou Badjie.

He said the shareholders of the company were the MD of the company with 8%, NAWEC 10%, MD of Gamcel 49% and GIA MD 3%.

Statements of account, account opening information of GNPC for the dalasi account were tendered and admitted.

He stated that the first dollar account was opened on 24 July 2014, by Momodou Badjie and Fafa Sanyang.

At this juncture, the statement of account of GNPC for the dollar account was tendered and admitted.

He posited that the second dollar account was opened on 30 May 2012, with the same signatories as the dalasi account, adding that Momodou Sabally and the former president were also signatories.

He adduced that instructions came from the office of the former president.

He posited that $4,215,329.29 was the balance and that on 20 August 2013, Momodou Sabally withdrew $650,000, adding that $150,000 was also withdrawn.

He stated that Momodou Sabally withdrew another amount of $650,000 and $150,000 respectively, adding that Medun Sanyang, the Manager of finance at GNPC, withdrew $450,000.

Mr Doye adduced that $100,000 was withdrawn on 23 September 2013, by Medun Sanyang, adding that there was a transfer of $224,900 to the Islamic Organisation Conference and signed by Momodou Sabally and the former president, and no purpose was stated.

He posited that $2,043,796.50, $195,348.84, $200,000, $77,258.24 were withdrawn, adding that $585,000, $125,715.33, $22,283.44, $92,912 were transferred.

Mr Doye stated that on 10 April 2015, $38,333.61 was paid for Amat Bittaye’s tuition fee and $11,492 was tuition fee for Seedy Drammeh.

On 26 June 2015, he testified, $128,870 was transferred to Njie Enterprise, adding that $200,000 was transferred to Gulf International Bank UK on 26 April 2016.

A sum of $172,863.29 was transferred to Euro Africa Group as well as another amount of $172,863.29 to same company, according to him.

He said Abdoulie Jarra and Medun Sanyang withdrew $1,485.46 and $930,000 respectively. 

Author: Dawda Faye
Source: Picture: Commissioners of Janneh Commission