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Ex-IGP Badjie denies giving cannabis to detainees

Feb 21, 2011, 12:06 PM | Article By: Malamin Conteh

The former Inspector General of Police, Ensa Badjie, last Thursday denied giving preferential treatment to detainees by giving them cannabis while in a police cell, before the Special Criminal Court in Banjul.

Ensa Badjie was continuing his defence testimony in the criminal trial involving him and Chief Superintendent of Prison Ali Ceesay.

According to him, first prosecution witness Soriba Condeh assisted the police to effect arrest on Langaman, adding that in doing so, he demanded his phone while he was in the cell, and Landing who was in possession of the phone gave Condeh the phone, in the presence of everybody.

"PW1 then called Langaman on the phone and told him to meet him at a Fula man’s shop at the Bambo junction," he said, adding that he (Ensa Badjie) hired two taxis, because none of the police knew Langaman except PW1 who was handcuffed, and took him along.

He said on arrival at the Bambo junction, PW1 Soriba Condeh sighted Langaman and pointed at him, and there and then he was arrested by the police and brought to the Serrekunda CID office, and that he paid each taxi driver D50.

Ensa Badjie further told the court that this was the only time Condeh used his own phone to call, and that it was given to him by Landing Bojang, while denying giving his own phone to Condeh because he was his friend.

After the arrest of Langaman, Soriba Condeh also directed the PIU to Brikama, where other suspected criminals were arrested, Ensa Badjie went on.

He denied giving preferential treatment to any inmate, and that the allegation was not true, when his defence counsel, BS Touray, told him that it was alleged in court that he gave cannabis to suspects, while they were in the cell.

Still testifying, Badjie said: "I escorted the suspected criminals to court, and then to Mr Dibbasey Bureau de Change in Serrekunda, where the break-in took place, and they told me that they removed the safe, but could not carry it, as they were chased by the police."

When it was again put to him by his counsel, BS Touray, that PW4 and PW6 equally alleged that when they were breaking the bureau de change he was constantly communicating with them, Badjie vehemently denied this accusation, adding that he never knew them before, and further denied the allegation that he gave cannabis to Ramsis when he was in a police cell.

"I have never taken part of the exhibits of cannabis and given it to the trial prisoners. The only day Soriba was taken to Pateh's office was the day when Benedict Jammeh and Omar Gibba came to the CID at the Serrekunda, and met me obtaining statement from the accused person," he added.

Badjie said when he called Ousman Gibba, the commissioner of Kanifing Division, and the then IGP Musa Mboob, they came to the Serrekunda Police Station, and he showed them the suspects and explained the scene to them. He said the then IGP Mboob gave him D1000 in appreciation of his work.

Badjie further asserted that he also never gave alcohol to any trial prisoner held in a police cell.

The case at that juncture was adjourned till 22nd February 2011.