Prosecution witness cross-examined in soldier trial

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Famara Kambi, the fifth prosecution witness in the case involving Babucarr Njie, a soldier who was found with a pistol at King Fahd Mosque in Banjul, was on 18 July 2017, cross-examined by the defence counsel, Sheriff Kumba Jobe.

When the case was called, Inspector Bojang said he was representing the IGP. Sheriff Kumba Jobe announced his representation for the accused.

An investigation report was handed to the witness by the defence counsel to read its introduction, which he did.

The defence counsel told the witness that he would agree with him that the accused was a member of the Gambia Armed Forces attached to the State Guard unit.

In response, he said the accused was attached to the previous State Guard unit in the former regime.

He was asked whether he had any reason to doubt that the accused is still a member of the Gambia Armed Forces, but he said it was not to his knowledge.

It was put to him that from his investigation report, he had found out that the accused used lawful means to be in possession of the pistol, and he answered in the positive.

It was also put to him that the second prosecution witness, Inspector Abdoulie Bojang, stated in the court that the act of the accused did not terrorise anybody, and was asked whether his investigations revealed the contrary. He said he could not tell.

It was put to him that in his investigation report he had found out that the accused was on the verge of returning the said pistol at the State Guard armoury, and he answered in the positive.

Asked whether he compiled the investigation, he said he did.

It was put to him that he recommended that the accused be charged. He answered in the positive.

He was asked to tell the court how he reached at that decision, and he said the accused was found with a pistol.

He was also asked whether he knows the elements that have to be proved for a person to be convicted for going armed in public. He answered in the positive.

He was then asked to tell the court the elements and he said the accused was not part of the presidential team and that the accused came with the pistol unlawfully.

It was put to him that what he had said was far from being the elements for which the accused was charged. But he said the accused was charged for going armed in public.

He was asked how many people did the investigation, and he said they were many.

He was also asked who were the others in the investigation team. He stated that it was him and Senghore.

It was put to him that Senghore has a vest experience than he (the witness) in investigation and writing report, but he said he did know.

He was asked whether he was the lead investigator, and he said he was part of it.

He was then asked who the lead investigator was, and he said he was.

It was put to him that he was lying that Senghore was the lead investigator in the matter, but he stated that what he said was true.

He was asked whether he could tell the court the binding nature of his recommendation to the prosecution. He answered in the positive but did not understand the word “binding.”

It was put to him that his recommendation was premised on his personal belief and behavior, and he answered in the positive.

Asked whether the army participates in the investigation of the matter, he stated that it does not.

He was asked to name the people who investigated the matter, and he said they were Ousainou Joof, Babucarr B. Saine and Ismaila Ndo’ye.

It was put to him that he did not know the role each of them played in the investigation. He said he knew but found it very difficult to explain the role each of them played in the investigation.

It was put to him that his ignorance went to suggest that he did not author the investigation report. He said all he said was true.

He was asked who sent the arms and ammunition for ballistic examination, but he said he could not remember the person.

Asked at what stage of the investigation the arms and ammunition were sent.  In response, he said immediately the accused was arrested.

It was put to him that everything he said in court was nothing but malicious fabrication, and that he was not the author of the investigation report.

He said he was the author.

At this juncture, Inspector Bojang announced the closure of the prosecution case.

Hearing continues on 31 July 2017. 

Author: Dawda Faye