#Article (Archive)

IGP Can't be Surety for Accused - Lawyer Tambedou

Nov 5, 2008, 4:37 AM | Article By: Modou Sanyang

Lawyer Sherriff Tambedou the leading counsel in the ongoing criminal trial of Bakary Gassama (former NIA Director of Finance) has argued that the person who is prosecuting you cannot be your surety.

Lawyer Tambedou made this statement yesterday before Justice Joseph Wowo of the Criminal Division of the Banjul High Court while submitting the bail review application filed by the applicant Bakary Gassama.

The applicant Bakary Gassama is seeking before the High Court a review of his bail conditions imposed on him by the Banjul Magistrates' Court.

According to Lawyer Tambedou the application was for the High Court to review the bail conditions imposed on the applicant by the Banjul Magistrates' Court. He said the accused was a public officer holding the position of Director of Finance at the NIA - National Intelligence. He added that the applicant is also seeking a declaration from the High Court that the bail conditions imposed by the lower court for the applicant to produce a surety who must be in the rank of Police Commissioner is excessive and amount to a denial of bail.

Lawyer Tambedou further argued that the person who is prosecuting the applicant is the Inspector General of Police, adding that to require the person prosecuting you to stand as a surety is tantamount to a denial of bail.

In granting bail, he said, what the magistrate should have considered was the nature of the charge, the severity of the punishment of the charge, the character of the evidence, the criminal record of the applicant and the likelihood of the applicant repeating the same offence.

He urged the court to exercise its discretionary discretion in favour of the applicant.

The applicant Bakary Gassama who is standing criminal trial at the Banjul Magistrates' Court was granted court bail in the sum of D100, 000 with a Gambian surety who must be in the rank of a police Commissioner - a condition he was unable to fulfil.

The case was at length adjourned until 6thNovember 2008.