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Prosecution fails to file bill of indictment in case of Fisheries officials

Jun 26, 2015, 10:03 AM | Article By: Halimatou Ceesay

State prosecutors have yet again failed to file a bill of indictment in the case of nine Fisheries ministry officials before Justice Abi of the Banjul High Court.

The Fisheries ministry officials are Amadou Saine, Nfamara Dampha, former director of fisheries, Famara Darboe, Dr Bamba Banja, then permanent secretary, Kebba Konjira, Joseph Gabidon, Musa Jawla, Abdoulie Njie and Momodou Njie.

They were earlier indicted on an eleven-count charge ranging from multiple counts of neglect of official duty, to economic crime and abuse of office, at the Banjul Magistrates’ Court.

When the case was called, lawyers L.S. Camara, Hawa Sisay-Sabally and S.M. Tambadou represented the accused persons, while O. Danso represented the state.

All the accused persons were present in court.

State counsel O. Danso informed the court that the state had not still filed the new bill of indictment, as they were yet to receive anything from the investigators to enable them prepare the indictment.

She, therefore, asked for a short adjournment.

L.S. Camara said he was not objecting to the application, but wanted to know how short it was going to be for the state to file the bill of indictment.

O. Danso said they would need up to next week Thursday.

Hawa Sisay Sabally, in her intervention, said the state should be on record for the last time, because if they should go to court on Thursday and the bill of indictment was not filed, the accused persons should be left to satisfy their bail since they were all on bail, until such a time the state was ready to file the bill of indictment; rather than the accused persons going to and from court all the time.

S.M. Tambadou said that based on the circumstances, he was not objecting.

Justice Abi said the last time the accused persons were before him, the state informed the court they were withdrawing charges against certain accused persons and, at the last adjournment date, the state asked for two weeks to file a bill of indictment, which was granted.

He said the court would not entertain adjournment based on no good grounds.

He, therefore, adjourned the case until 2 July 2015, for mention.