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Former GEAPP coordinator Sosseh explains project documents to the court

Jun 9, 2015, 9:37 AM | Article By: Halimatou Ceesay

Former GEAP coordinator Sheikh Tijan Sosseh yesterday took the court through several relevant project documents relating to the GEAPP project, before Justice Amadi of the Special Criminal Court.

Continuing his defence, Sheikh Tijan Sosseh said during the bidding process, the documents included the consultant’s assessment report, designs and technical specifications, the World Bank standard bidding document and evaluation report.

“If you see some of these documents, will you be able to identify them and how?” asked counsel.

“I will be able to identify the documents, because I have seen the documents before,” replied Sosseh.

However, deputy Director of Public Prosecutions MB Abubakar said he did not think the witness was in a position to identify the documents, because the prosecution produced the documents; whilst they were thinking that counsel would tender the documents through the bar.

Counsel Singhateh said for the sake of clarity the documents were related to the accused, as the project coordinator of GEAPP, and most of the documents were addressed to the accused, so the accused was in a position to identify the documents.

MB Abubakar said that in view of the clarification the defence could go ahead.

Sosseh also said the documents were his working documents, and his initial was on some of the documents.

The documents, bill of quantities, the World Bank standards, contract documents, evaluation reports, were identified by him and tendered in court and marked in evidence as exhibits without any objection from the state.

Some of the weekly and monthly reports prepared by the consultant were also tendered in court, and marked in evidence as exhibits.

The photographs from the engineering company of the structures of the building before the construction of different stages, and at the end of the construction, was tendered in court and marked in evidence as exhibits.

When asked by his defence counsel to explain the bill of quantities, the accused said it was produced by the consultant Cityscapes Associates, and prepared them through an assessment conducted at different project sites in collaboration with the staff of the Ministry of Agriculture facilitated by GEAPP.

He said the bill of quantities was a prescription of construction work to be done, items required and the cost.

He said the process of the approval of the bill of quantities and by the contract committee, through the GEAPP project, was submitted to the World Bank for review and approval.

He said the contract committee prepared defence exhibits.

He added that the contract committee comprises the Ministry of Agriculture, GEAPP, Ministry of Works, GPPA, NARI, Department of Agriculture, Cityscapes Associates, the World Bank task team leader and the Central Project Coordinating Unit.

He said the GEAPP works under the contract committee in terms of managing contracts and the tender process.

He also said his role in respect of defence exhibit 3 was to facilitate and give them technical advice.

The contract committee through the GEAPP prepared defence exhibit 4, he added.

It was the World Bank that approved defence exhibits 2, 3 and 4, he continued, adding that once the document was approved by the World Bank the role of GEAPP was to follow those proceedings.

He said the weekly and monthly reports are submitted before the certificates.

He added that after receiving the weekly and monthly reports they (GEAPP, EU, Ministry of Agriculture, and the World Bank) would go to the field each on their own to verify.

The case continues on 30 June 2015, at 1pm.

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