May 31, 2010, 11:18 AM
The case of prohibition of conduct conducive to the breach of the peace involving five accused persons Monday proceeded at the Brikama Magistrates’ Court with the continuation of the cross-examination of the fourth prosecution witness (PW4).
The accused persons are Buba Bajinka, Imran Jabang, Nyima Jabang, Lamin Jabang and Famadi Bojang.
Continuing his testimony under cross-examination, Maline Touray, alkalo of Berending Village, told the court that he attended a meeting that was held at the head office of the Supreme Islamic Council in Kanifing, which was different from the one held at the Pirang Village.
Alkalo Touray further testified that members of the Council asked the people of Pirang not to remove Imam Jabang, the old Imam, because he had served them for 32 years.
He said the council also asked them to allow him to lead the five daily prayers and others like the Tobaski and Koriteh and the new Imam, Janneh, to lead in the Friday Juma prayers.
PW4 further adduced that this decision was taken by SIC after the problem for which the accused persons had been brought to court.
“Are you aware that SIC took this decision on 2 February 2011?” defence counsel asked and the witness said he was aware.
Asked again by the defence counsel whether he was aware that the problem happened on 16 April 2011, the witness answered in the positive.
“Since SIC decided that the five daily prayers should be led by Imam Jabang, the old Imam, it was wrong for Imam Janneh, the new Imam, to lead the 5pm and 7pm prayers on 16 April 2011,” defence counsel put it to the witness.
In response, the witness said it was Imam Jabang, the old Imam, who authorised Imam Janneh, the new Imam, to lead the 5pm prayers on that day.
He testified that he did not know who led the 2pm prayers but for the 7pm prayers, it was Imam Jabang, the old Imam.
It was then put to him that his evidence contradicted the testimony of the earlier prosecution witnesses and if there was peace between the two Imams, this problem would not have taken place.
In response, the witness said there was peace between the two Imams.
Defence counsel further put it to him that if the allegation that Imam Jabang authorised Imam Janneh to lead the prayers, then the accused persons would not have protested, but the witness maintained that it was in his presence when Imam Jabang was telling Imam Janneh to lead the prayers.
Challenged that he said he did not pray the five daily prayers at the mosque, then why did he go to the mosque on 14 April 2011, the witness said he was invited for the recitation of the Holy Quran in a compound near the mosque and when it was time for the 5pm prayers, he went to the mosque.
When it was put to him that the only reason for him to go to the mosque on that day was to mobilize his people to change the decision of SIC, but the witness denied that.
The case was then adjourned till 22 August 2012.