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Court rules on Lang & Co appeal case

Dec 20, 2010, 11:13 AM | Article By: Sainey M.K. Marenah

A three-member panel of judges of the Gambia Court of Appeal, headed by the president Justice Joseph Wowo, Friday ruled on the oral submissions made by the state respondent and the counsel for the appellants on the appeal case filed by Lang Tombong Tamba and six others.

The appellants, were convicted and sentenced to death at the High Court in Banjul on 15th July 2010, and subsequently appealed against their conviction and sentence.

The other appellants are Brigadier General Omar Bun Mbye, Colonel Lamin Bo Badjie, Lt Colonel Kawsu Camara, Modou Gaye, a former deputy IGP, Gibril Ngorr Secka, a former diplomat, and Abdoulie Joof, a businessman, were all present in court.

Delivering its ruling before both parties, Justice Wowo read the summary of oral arguments made by both parties, while analysing them in sequence.

“I have listened carefully to the oral submissions made by both appellants’ counsel and state respondent, and the grounds of appeal, and the issue to be determined was whether the appeal is competent and whether the appellants were diligently prosecuted,” Justice Wowo stated.

Justice Wowo also cited various rules of the Gambia Court of Appeal, and analysed them according to the dictates of the law. 

He told the court that the notice of appeal filed by the appellants was clearly signed by their counsel, SM Tambedou and PCO Secka, adding that this was in total violation of the Gambia Court of Appeal rules.

Justice Wowo further said that the points raised by the state respondent were procedural, while citing various rules of the court of appeal to buttress his ruling.

Subsequently, he ordered that the appellants collect the records of the proceedings from the High Court of the Gambia within 15 days, and to also file in their arguments within 30 days.

The two other judges agreed with the ruling delivered by the president, but also made their opinions and observations regarding the motion filed by both parties.

The case is expected to resume on 14th January 2011, for definite hearing.

State Withdraws Motion in Yusuf Ezideen Appeal Case

Meanwhile, in a separate, but related development, the appeal involving Yusuf Ezideen alias Rambo, a Lebanese-Gambian national, also resumed on Friday at the Gambia Court of Appeal.

Counsel for the state respondent, Simon A. Abi, told the court that they were applying to withdraw their motion.

Counsel for the appellant, Hawa Sisay-Sabally, did not raise any objection to the state’s application to withdraw their motion, but argued that she should be awarded costs for a lot of research she had done.

Justice Wowo subsequently struck out the motion filed by the state respondent.

Yusuf Ezideen was not present in court.

The case was adjourned till 14th January 2011, for definite hearing.