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11 jailed UDP supporters granted bail

Dec 9, 2016, 11:05 AM | Article By: Bruce Asemota

The Gambia Court of Appeal presided over by Justice A.O. Adegoke, Justice Awa Bah and Justice Edrissa Mb’ai, yesterday granted bail to the jailed 11 UDP supporters, who were convicted and sentenced by the Mansakonko High Court in July 2016.

The appellants were Lamin Sonko, Modou Touray, Lansana Beyai, Lamin Marong, Alhajie Fatty, Nogot Njie, Fatoumatta Jawara, Fatou Camara, Kafu Bayo, Ebrima Jabang and Modou Ngum.

During the court sitting, lawyer A.A B. Gaye informed the court that the 4th appellant, Lamin Marong, was admitted at the hospital as he was receiving medical treatment.

He further informed the court that there was pending application before the court, and called lawyer Amie Bensouda to move the application.

Senior state counsel A.M. Yusuf, in response, cited the ruling in the case of Ousainou Darboe and 18 others, and said the state was leaving the matter at the discretion of the court.

Justice Awa Bah then retorted: “What are you leaving to the court, are you opposing or not opposing, we want to record you.”

Justice Awa Bah added that the ruling delivered last Monday regarding Ousainou Darboe and 18 others had nothing to do with the present case, noting that the present case was a different case.

State counsel Yusuf told the court that his reasons for not opposing the application for bail for the 11 jailed UDP supporters was based on the ruling of the court in the case of Darboe and 18 others.

The court then ruled and asked lawyer Amie Bensouda to move the bail application on behalf of the 11 appellants, who prayed the court for the appellants to be admitted to bail on the same terms and conditions as in the sister case of Darboe and 18 others.

In her ruling, Justice A.O. Adegoke granted bail to the appellants with one Gambian surety and ordered that each of the appellants deposit their international passport with the court and, where the passport was not available, they should deposit their ID cards with the court.

After the ruling was delivered, lawyer Amie Bensouda informed the court that the record of proceedings was ready.

Senior state counsel A.M. Yusuf applied for a short date to enable the state/respondent time to study the record, and check whether everything was intact.

Lawyer A.N.D. Bensouda then applied for briefs of argument to be ordered, having regard to the fact that the Christmas vacation was around the corner.

The court granted the state/respondent’s application.

 The matter was then adjourned until 15 December 2016, for mention.