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Former Attorney General Jobarteh cross-examined

Nov 19, 2013, 3:16 PM | Article By: Malamin L.M. Conteh

[if gte mso 9]> Normal 0 false false false EN-US JA X-NONE Former Attorney General Lamin AMS Jobarteh was yesterday cross-examined in the criminal trial with former Solicitor General Pa Harry Jammeh, and former Secretary Genera Dr Njogu L Bah, at the Special Criminal Court in Banjul before Justice Emmanuel Nkea.

The three are being tried under a three-count charge, which included conspiracy to carry out a lawful purpose by an unlawful means, giving false information to a public officer, and abuse of office, charges they denied.

Under cross-examination by defence counsel E. Jah, Jobarteh told the court that he did not conspire with anybody, more so the 2nd accused person in the removal and prosecution of Justice Wowo.

He added that whenever he was out of the jurisdiction as AG, his responsibility was usually assigned by State House.

“When I am away somebody else will assume my responsibility. I know we used to have different directives, but I cannot say something that I did not know,” said ex-AG Jobarteh.

Responding to questions by defence counsel L.K. Mboge, Jobarteh told the court that as far as he knew, Justice Wowo was the President of the Gambia Court of Appeal, adding that the office of the AG was represented at the Judicial Service Commission.

“I was not aware of the appointment of Justice Wowo as the acting-Chief Justice,” he said.

It was put to him that according to exhibit F, he was present at the JSC meeting, but Jobarteh said he was not sure whether he was there or not.

He further adduced that officially, he never heard that Wowo was the acting-Chief Justice, adding that he never conspired or connived with anybody, more so the 3rdaccused person, to remove Justice Wowo.

“I still stand by the contents of exhibit A, my cautionary statement to the police,” he added.

At this juncture, his defence counsel, BS Touray, said they intended to call witnesses in their defence.

The case was then adjourned to 25 November 2013.

Lamin AMS Jobarteh, Pa Harry Jammeh, and Dr Njogu L. Bah, were accused on count one that, between January and February 2013, in the Banjul City Council, within the jurisdiction of the court, conspired among themselves to remove Justice Wowo, a sitting Judge of the Court of Appeal of The Gambia by an lawful means, to wit, orchestrating his arrest, detention and mock trial, and thereby committed an offence.

On Count two, Lamin AMS Jobarteh, Pa Harry Jammeh, and Dr Njogu L. Bah, were alleged that in January 2013, in the Banjul City Council, within the jurisdiction of the court, with intent to cause the termination of the service of Justice Wowo, fed John Belford( in his capacity as the Judicial Secretary of The Gambia) and the members of the Judicial Service Commission of The Gambia with information to the effect that his Excellency, the President of The Gambia had directed the termination of the appointment of Justice Wowo, knowing the information to be false and thereby committed an offence.

Lamin AMS Jobarteh, Pa Harry Jammeh, and Dr Njogu L. Bah, were further alleged on count three that, between January and February 2013, in the Banjul City Council, within the jurisdiction of the court, whilst in their offices as the Attorney General and Minister of Justice of The Gambia, and Solicitor General of The Gambia, and Secretary General and Head of Civil Service of The Gambia, respectively, abused the authority of their respective offices, by arbitrarily causing the arrest detention, and termination of the appointment of Justice Wowo, and thereby committed an offence.

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