Mar 9, 2009, 6:28 AM
Magistrate Jobarteh of the Kanifing Magistrates’ Court on 8 January 2014 discharged one Sainey Manga and Adama Sanneh, following an application made by Inspector Touray to withdraw the charge against them.
Sainey Manga and Adama Sanneh were on 23 December 2013, along with seven others, arraigned before Magistrate Jobarteh for disobeying a lawful order to vacate their lands.
But on 8 January 2014, the prosecuting officer, Inspector Touray, informed the court that Sainey Manga and Adama Sanneh had already vacated their lands.
As a result, he applied under Section 68 (1) of the CPC to withdraw the charge against them.
Magistrate Jobarteh granted his application and discharged them.
The case was adjourned till 22 January 2014, for the prosecution of Momodou Edrisa Bah, Ismaila Jammeh and Albert Manneh, who maintained their plea of not guilty.
They were granted bail of D5,000 each with a Gambian surety who should swear to an affidavit of means, and deposit his or her ID card.
According to the particulars of offence, Momodou Edrisa Bah, and others on 4 October 2010, at Kotu, in the Kanifing Municipality, were ordered by the Department of Physical Planning under the Ministry of Local Government to vacate the premises they occupied but failed to do so.
It would be recalled that Magistrate Jobarteh on 23 December 2013, convicted Laity Jammeh, Ismaila Jarju, Tony Jarju and Ebrima Jammeh for disobeying lawful order to vacate their lands, following their plea of guilt.
Narrating the facts to the court, the prosecuting officer, Inspector Touray, said that on 4 October 2010, at the Kotu Quarry, in the Kanifing Municipality, the convicts had their lands in the area.
He stated that Physical Planning, under the Ministry of Local Government and Lands, visited the said area.
He posited that having realized the said area, gave notice to the convicts to vacate, adding that the government of the day also gave them D6,000 and allocated them other areas at Alatentu and Tintinto.
Prosecutor Touray adduced that the convicts were still occupying the lands after the areas were given to them.
This warranted for their arrest, he said, adding that they were cautioned and charged.
The notice given to them to vacate was tendered by the prosecutor, which they did not object to.
The said notice was admitted by the court.
The convicts said they agreed to the facts as narrated by the prosecutor.
In their mitigation, Laity Jammeh begged for mercy and said he was going to continue to construct his house, adding that he planned to move to the house but it fell during the raining season.
Ismaila Jarju, in his mitigation, told the court he heard all what was said but was craving the court’s indulgence to temper justice with mercy.
He said he never knew this would be the outcome and begged the court to give him little time to vacate the place.
He stated that he has no job to earn from to be able to construct a house and has no place to stay.
Tony Jarju also begged the court for mercy because he was not well, adding that he was not disobedient to move from the land.
He said he was asked to move to Alatentu but could not have a plot of land.
In his mitigation, Ebrima Jammeh begged the court to temper justice with mercy.
He said he has 15 children and two wives, and lives with his grandmother, adding that he had demolished his house at Alatentu and had constructed another one at Tintinto.
He stated that three of his children are attending high school and he is also responsible for his other relatives, adding that he was not well.
Magistrate Jobarteh, in his judgement, told the court he heard the mitigations of the convicts and had observed their demeanour.
He said they were remorseful and did not waste the time of the court, adding that they were first-time offenders.
He stated further that the court shall neither give them mandatory sentence nor would it fine them.
He warned the convicts to vacate the said lands.
The convicts shall serve three months without a fine if they reoccupy the lands, he said.