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In NIA Diamond Case

Jul 14, 2009, 5:27 AM | Article By: Dawda Faye

Second Accused Person Testifies

Continuing their testimonies, Basiru Jabang, who is the second accused in the NIA diamond case, testified on 10th July, 2009, before Senior Magistrate Sainabou Wadda-Ceesay of the Kanifing Magistrates' Court.

The accused, Basiru Jabang, was represented by Lawyer Combeh Gaye, who was holding brief for Lawyer Jobarteh, who is the defence counsel for the 1st, 3rd, 4th and 5th accused persons.

In his testimony, Basiru Jabang told the court that he lives at Sanyang village and on 23rd June, 2003, he was an NIA officer. He stated that he was on duty on this day and was receiving instructions from Kajali Jawara. He adduced that when he arrived at work in the morning at the Badala Park Hotel, Kajali Jawara told him that he should go to Senegambia Beach Hotel for help. He added that upon arrival at Senegambia, Kajali Jawara informed him that he had reported that there were two tourists who were suspected of being in possession of stolen diamonds.

He further testified that Kajali Jawara, Lamin Sanneh and Fabakary Barrow, and himself were at Senegambia. He noted that around 12.00p.m, he took permission from Kajali Jawara and told him that he should see someone at Kotu.

He further explained that he later came back and joined his colleagues. He narrated that Kajali was aware that he was back because he met him at Senegambia around the pool side. He indicated that Kajali asked him to stay around the pool and watch on two white men who were also around the pool. He added that Kajali left after the instruction.

He noted that while he was around the pool, one of the white men left. He noted that he called Kajali on his phone to inform him about the departure of the whiteman and Kajali asked him to stay around the hotel to watch the other whiteman.

He stated that he later saw a group of people coming who included Kajali, Lamin Sanneh, Fabakary Barrow, a lady called Adama Bangura and a young man, called Alfusainey Jarjue and the two white men. He added that all of them were coming from the hotel.

He adduced further that when they got close, Kajali asked him to join them and they all went together and boarded their vehicle which was parked at the back of the hotel and they left for Badala Park. He added that two white men were being questioned and they were different from the ones he was asked to watch and that he never saw them before. He stated that he could not remember the person who questioned the white men. He said their names and nationalities were asked.

He adduced that one of them said he was Frank Mahler and the other he said was called Nicklas Westphal and that they were both Germans.

He noted that they were questioned about diamonds, but they said they did not have any diamonds but later they confessed that they had diamonds with Dr. Alami who supposed to give the pieces of diamond to them at the airport. He stated that apart from the diamonds, they did not have other properties, according to the Germans.

He indicated that Adama Bangura was present and she said two white men were supposed to pay her $2,500. He added that the white men said they did not have enough money to pay her and that they had only $500, which they gave to her.

He narrated that Adama said the Germans should pay her $2,500 for accompanying them to Sierra Leone to buy some stones of diamond. He added that after the $500 was given to Adama, they released the Germans.

He adduced that they were asked to stand by. He indicated that Lamin Sanneh and Kajali were supposed to go to the airport to be on standby. He noted that later Lamin Sanneh and Kajali were supposed to go to the airport to be on standby. He noted that later Lamin Sanneh called him while he was at Sanyang village and it was in the evening that he was coming with a vehicle to pick them because they were supposed to report at their headquarters in Banjul. He added that on their way, Lamin Sanneh received a phone call that they could stand down and report the following day. He narrated that they all reported at their headquarters in Banjul.

He adduced that at the headquarters, they were being investigated by the panel of directorates. He stated that after the investigations, they were then suspended, except Salimina Drammeh for unprofessional conduct and that they were never reinstated. He indicated that during the investigations, they were served letters of dismissal.

He added that there was a commission of enquiry at the police headquarters in Banjul that followed and they were not informed about the findings of the commission.

He denied that he searched the two Germans as testified by Alfusainey Jarjue and he never entered their rooms. He told the court that he never stole anything from the Germans.

The case was adjourned to the 31st July, 2009, for cross-examination.