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Dr Njogu Bah ‘abuse of office’ trial begins

Mar 13, 2014, 9:54 AM | Article By: Bakary Samateh

The trial commenced yesterday of the jailed former secretary general and head of the civil service, Dr. Njogu Bah, at the Banjul Magistrates’ Court before Principal Magistrate Hilary Abeke.

Njogu Bah appeared in court from Mile 2 central prisons where he is serving a two-year jailed term after being convicted by the Special Criminal Court in Banjul.

First to testify was one Lamin Ceesay, a security officer, who told the court that he knew the accused person, as he was brought before them for investigation in connection with the appointment of one Ms Jainaba Jobarteh.

He added that on 4 September 2013 and 30 October 2013, a cautionary statement was obtained from the accused person, and that Dr. Bah wrote his own statement, in the presence of an independent witness called Ebrima Fatty.

On 26 September 2013, an additional statement was obtained from the accused person, on 30 October 2013 a voluntary statement was obtained from him, and the same procedure was followed, said the witness.

He identified the statements, which were admitted by the court in evidence and marked as exhibits.

Under cross-examination, defence counsel LK Mboge asked the witness who brought the accused person to him or the panel.

The DPP objected, and said counsel was asking something which was not relevant to the case, and counsel needed to ask something relating to the case.

The defence counsel insisted that he asked a relevant question and cited the law in support of his argument.

The case was adjourned to 19 March 2014, for ruling.

The particulars of offence stated that Dr Njogou Bah, some time in June 2013 at the State House in Banjul, abused the authority of his office as Secretary General and Head of the Civil Service, by interfering with the recommendation and posting of Ms Jainaba Jobarteh to the Gambia’s permanent mission at the United Nations in New York, without following the proper procedure for nomination, and thereby committed an offence.