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State Guard Commander Appears in Court

Apr 30, 2008, 7:13 AM | Article By: By Modou Sanyang & Bakary Samateh

Lt. Colonel Serign Modou Njie, State Guard Battalion Commander, on Tuesday testified before Senior Magistrate Kayode of the Banjul Magistrates Court in the trial of Government theft case involving Manlafi Sanyang, Lt Bakary Camara and Domenico Fedelish. The trio are being tried on the allegation of stealing a Government vehicle BJL 4063B Ssanyong Korando.

In his testimony, Lt. Colonel Njie informed the court that he knew the 1st accused Lt Camara [as one] who was posted at the State Guard Battalion as Senior Orderly to the President.  "I also know the 2nd accused Superintendent Manlafi Sanyang who was posted at state House as Government Vehicles Controller," he added.

Lt Col. Njie adduced that on 21st January 2008 he was informed by the 2nd accussed, Manlafi Sanyang, that he was asked to make a transfer of a particular vehicle to the 3rd accused, Domenico Fedelish, and that it was a Korando verhicle.  "I know the vehicle.  It was at State House and a state vehicle.  The 1st accused, Lt. Bakary Camara, also told me that he was asked to make a transfer by the 2nd accused to the name of the 3rd accused," he revealed, adding: "The 2nd accused said he wanted to know whether I had any knowledge about it.  I told the 2nd accussed to go back and find out from the 1st accused."

Under cross-examination, Lt. Col. Njie admitted that he did not confront Lt. Camara on the issue.  He also confirmed that he did not state anything on his statement about what transpired between him and Lt. Camara in respect of the Ssanyong vehicle. 

He further stated: "I know the 3rd accused. He used to come to State House."  However as to whether he knew the work of the 3rd accused, Domenico Fedelish and his employer, he replied in the negative.  He said he did not know that the 3rd accused was employed by the Kanilai Family Farm.  He also stated that he remembered that a state vehicle was assigned to the 3rd accused, Domenico Fedelish but he could not remember whether it was a Korando vehicle.  He admitted seeing the Korando vehicle with Domenico Fedelish, noting that he didn't know how Domenico came into possession of the Korando vehicle.  As to whether he knew that the vehicle was given to Fedelish as a gift by his employer, he replied in the negative.  He also confirmed that Lt. Camara had cause to associate with the Kanilai Family Farm. 

The case was adjourned to 2nd May.

Meanwhile a separate case involving only Manlafi Sanyang was struck out by Magistrate Kayode for lack of diligent prosecution. He was in this case accused of stealing a State vehicle BJL4591A and also the sum of D75,000 being proceeds realised from the sale of the said vehicle.