Apr 30, 2009, 4:56 AM
The false information trial involving Alasana S.T. Jammeh, former Permanent Secretary at the Department of Religious Affairs is progressing at the Banjul Magistrates' Court.
Yesterday proceedings saw the testimony of the prosecution's third witness, Alh.Mustapha Saine, who was a member of the Hajj Commission in 2008, and works as a Contractor at the Kanifing Municipal Council.
In his testimony, Mr. Saine told the told court that he knew the accused person at the time he (accused) was the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Religious Affairs.
He said as members of the Hajj Commission they were tasked with the responsibility and preparation of Hajj and make recommendations to the government through the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Religious Affairs.
He added that they do receive information and directives from the accused as the then Permanent Secretary responsible for religious affairs, who he said told the Commission that they should go in for the cheapest aircraft for 2008 hajj operation.
According to him, there were three aircraft offers and among them was the Inter-Continental Airline, which was the cheapest.
He further told the court that the Commission members unanimously agreed and selected the Inter-Continental Airline because it was so far the cheapest among the offers.
He said it was not based on any favour, but on directives and information.
He said the Permanent Secretary was the mediator between the Commission and the Executive and that whatever directive they put in place, the Commission has nothing to challenge.
Magistrate Emmanuel Nkea then adjourned the case to 19th November 2009.