Expelled college student appears in court for alleged burglary

Monday, October 02, 2017

One Abdou Hydara was recently arraigned before principal magistrate Omar Cham of the Brikama Magistrates’ Court, after he was alleged to have stolen some items at the University of The Gambia, Brikama Campus.

The prosecution alleged that the accused, Ebrima Hydara, on 21 September, 2017 at the University of The Gambia, Brikama Campus, broke and entered into an office and stole following items: two projectors, valued at D77,000; two computer processing units with 9 monitors, valued at D26,000; one stabiliser, valued at D5,000; two extension cables, valued at D600; one Laptop, valued at D15,000 and sugar container with a total value of D116, 600, being properties of the University of The Gambia, Brikama Campus.

The accused pleaded not guilty to the charge pressed against him, and the prosecution team, led by Sergeant 2294 Jammeh sought for the case to be adjourned to enable the prosecution secure the presence of the witnesses.

He said that the prosecution was vehemently opposed to the granting of bail to the accused, submitting that the accused was neither a first time offender, nor a second time offender.

He noted that he has been convicted on a similar offence, which he said, was carried out at the Brikama Campus.

He further submitted that the accused was expelled from the Gambia College, whilst he was a student after he was found wanting, as a result of his notoriety, particularly in the theft of the college chairs.

Officer Jammeh informed the court that it’s not oblivious of the fact that bail is a constitutional right of the accused and that granting of bail depends largely at the discretion of the court.

He described the accused as a nuisance to the community and cautioned that the community would not be at rest, if he was granted bail.

He added that the accused had attempted to escape when he was led by the CID officers to where he kept the alleged stolen items, but he was caught after a manhunt.

In his response, the accused told the court that he is a Gambian and has the constitutional right to bail, noting that the offence he was alleged to have been committed are not capital offences.

He told the court that he has sustained injuries all over his body and urgently needs medical treatment.

The accused later removed his shirt to show some injuries he sustained to the court and then urged the court to grant him bail.

In his reply, Sergeant Jammeh informed the court that there was a pending charge against the accused, while maintaining that he was caught on several occasions attempting to escape when he was taken to Brikama Health Centre for medical treatment.

However, the presiding magistrate Omar Cham, in his ruling, disclosed that granting bail to the accused person is a constitutional right, as he cited the statutory provisions to back-up his argument.

Magistrate Cham said he was inclined to grant the accused bail in the sum of D250, 000 with two Gambian sureties, all of whom shall swear to an affidavit of means. He also demanded that the accused shall report to the court on every sitting, failure of which would risk his bail being revoked until the final determination of the trial.

Hearing continues on 3 October 2017.

Author: Bruce Asemota