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Jambur Alkalo Appears in Court

Feb 11, 2009, 2:23 AM | Article By: Yai Dibba & Binta Fatty

Alhagie Kebba Judu Bojang, the Alkalo of Jambur village in Kombo South, Western Region, yesterday appeared at the Brikama Magistrates' Court where he testified in the ongoing trial of four accused persons who were charged with two counts of arson and unlawfully setting fire to his house.

Morro Gassama, Nuha Darboe, Momodou Bojang and Foday Bojang are alleged to have set fire to the house of the village Alkalo, Kebba Judu Bojang, on 31stJanuary of this year, a charge they all denied.

In his testimony, Alkalo Bojang informed the court that on Wednesday 28thJanuary while he was away from the village, he received a phone call from his son who told him that there were some people waiting for him in his compound. He said upon his arrival at his house he found some soldiers there and then asked them about their mission. He said the soldiers told him that they were sent by the president and that he had land in Jambur.

According to Alkali Bojang, he replied to the soldiers that the land that the president had in the village of Jambur was the one that was given to him by one 'kabilo' called Santajuba.

He added that the soldiers later told him to inform the villagers to gather at the village Bantaba, which he did. He said that at the gathering, certain people started pointing out people in the village, including his own wife and sister, that they were taking to give them some medicine to drink.

"The soldiers then took all those people who were pointed out. Then on the following day, Thursday, the accused persons came to my compound and asked me about the whereabouts of the soldiers and some of the villagers who were taken along," he told the court.

He noted that he replied that he did not have an idea about the soldiers and the people because there was no communication between him and the president.

"I told them even my wife and my sister were also taken along but they insisted that if soldiers did not bring back the villagers, they will set my house on fire," he said.

He further explained that it was from there that he called Brikama and Yundum Police Stations, Police Commissioner, CID Office and the NIA to inform them about the plan of the accused persons.

He said that on that particular night, some of the officers came to his house and he gave them the name of one Tapha Bojang and others. Alkalo Bojang added that Tapha was then arrested and taken to Brikama Police Station.

"The following morning, I went to Brikama Police Station to give my statement where I also begged the police to release Tapha Bojang. When he was released on Saturday, I was inside my bedroom. I heard people shouting and when I came out, I found out that there was fire on my door and my door mat and curtain were all burnt down by the fire," he explained.

The hearing continues.