Edward, Yanks, Ebou Jallow to pay back $32,220,000

Wednesday, October 09, 2019

The government White Paper, an excerpt of the 93 page report of Commission of Inquiry has ordered Ebou Jallow, Edward Singhateh and Yankuba Touray (Yanks) to pay back to the state the sum of $32,220,000 within 30 days from the publication of the White Paper; failure of which their properties shall be forfeited to the state and be sold.

The report further stated that the proceeds of sale shall be applied to the payment of monies for which they are found to be liable in the report in addition to criminal proceedings to be initiated against them.          

The Janneh Commission as it is widely called was established to probe the financial activities of public bodies, enterprise, offices and close associates as regards their dealings with former President Yahya Jammeh.

The report of the Commission reveals that the then Armed Forces Provisional Ruling Council (AFPRC) government forged diplomatic relations with Taiwan in expectation of obtaining financial aid for their transition programme of which Taiwan gave The Gambia $35 million loan.

The report indicates that Ebou Jallow, Edward Singhateh and Yankuba Touray were all soldiers of The Gambia Armed Forces and together with former President Jammeh, constituted the Armed Forces Provisional Ruling Council (AFPRC) in 1994.

The report pointed out that they held various positions in government including spokesperson of the AFPRC and minister of Local Government respectively.

“The commission found that Ebou Jallow negotiated for $5 million cash payment of the said loan on the instructions of the former President Jammeh which was brought to The Gambia by a special flight and presented to the AFPRC,” the report disclosed.

The report further stated that Ebou Jallow and Edward Singhateh deposited an amount of $2.3 million at the Central Bank of The Gambia and $2.7 million has not yet been accounted for amidst claims that it was handed over to former President Jammeh while indicating that Yankuba Touray was responsible for supervising the transaction programme projects.

“The commission found that the AFPRC failed to account for $32,220,000 of the loan from Taiwan and that they are jointly and severally liable for the amounts not accounted for,” it stated.

The commission noted further that the ouster clauses under the Second Schedule of the 1997 Constitution do not apply as the members of the AFPRC were not acting in the performance of their official duties or in exercise of their executive powers when they operated outside the framework of the law and/or misappropriated public funds.

“The government accepts the findings of the commission in so far as they relate to Ebou Jallow, Edward Singhateh and Yankuba Touray,” the report stated”.

“The government has also noted that the collective actions of the AFPRC in overthrowing a democratic government in 1994 set the stage and substantially enabled former President Jammeh perpetrate the unprecedented looting of the Gambia’s meager resources to the detriment of the country,” the report added.

Consequently, the government has decided that: “Ebou Jallow, Edward Singhateh and YankubaTouray are hereby banned from holding public office for the remainder of their lives and also banned from holding any director positions in any state owned enterprise in The Gambia for 15 years from the date of publication of the White Paper.” 

Author: Fatou B. Cham