Feb 16, 2015, 10:06 AM
senior government officials, including permanent secretaries, deputy permanent
secretaries and directors were Wednesday paraded before principal magistrate
Omar Cham of the Banjul Magistrates’ Court, and charged with neglect of
official duties and abuse of office.
They are Abdoulie Jallow, Kaiding Sambou, Bernard Mendy, Cherno Njie, Yira Jammeh, Abdoulie T.B. Jarra, Aminata Semega Janneh, Aussainou Jorbarteh, Abdoulie Jallow, Fafa Sanneh, Cherno Omar Barry, Abdoulie K.M. Jallow, Abdoulie Jallow, Lamin Camara, Lamin Sanyang, Tijan Jeng, Fatou Matta Bah, Momodou Saidyleigh, Aja Fatou Gaye, Habib T.B. Jarra, Lamin Sisey, Naffie Barry, Famara Darboe, Roheyatou Kah and Sanna Gassama.
They were alleged to have neglected their duties to engage the services of qualified mechanics or engineers to assess and diagnose the conditions of vehicles under their purview, leading to the wrong identification of vehicles for auction, between the year 2014 and 2016 in Banjul and diverse places, while serving as permanent secretaries, deputy permanent secretaries, chief drivers and drivers of their various government ministries and departments.
They were also alleged to have abused their offices, between the year 2014 and 2016 in Banjul and diverse places, by identifying the wrong vehicles for auction while serving as permanent secretaries, deputy permanent secretaries, directors, principal assistant secretaries, chief drivers and drivers of their various government ministries and departments. They all denied the charges.
Lawyer L.S. Camara made the bail application for all the accused persons on behalf other defence counsel.
Counsel Camara submitted that both the Criminal Procedure Code and the Constitution have given the court the power to grant bail to the accused person, since “the offences are bailable”.
In response, the police prosecutor, Assistant Superintendent P L Badjie opposed the bail application, submitting that the accused persons were holding senior government positions, and if they are granted bail, this would affect the trial.
“One does not need an identity card to leave the court’s jurisdiction” and that the borders are “porous”, he said, further arguing that investigations are still ongoing.
The case was then adjourned until 18 July for ruling on the bail application.