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Trial of Efry Mbye and Rongo resumes

Jun 22, 2011, 1:26 PM | Article By: Malamin Conteh

The criminal trial involving Momodou Lamin Jarju alias Rongo and Abdoulie Efery Mbye Monday continued at the Banjul Magistrates’ Court before acting-Principal Magistrate Taiwo Alagba.

The duo are being tried for giving false information to a public officer, making false documents, uttering false documents and prohibition of conduct conducive to the breach of peace.

Testifying, Modou Badjie , a resident of Banjulinding village, told the court that they had a meeting with the then Secretary General Dr Njogu Bah at State House, who told them that the meeting was summoned by the President because he was aware of the problem at Banjulinding and wanted them to put aside their differences and unite as one.

He told the court that Dr Njogu Bah further told them that the President said the Banjulinding alkalo is Eric Tunde Janneh, and they should all follow him and the alkalo should treat everybody equally.

Badjie further testified that they received a letter from the Village Development Committee and Council of Elders that they wanted Foday Jabang to be the alkalo of Banjulinding and not Eric Tundeh Janneh.

He said the author of the letter was Rongo and his people, adding that they formed a delegation and went to the Drug Squad boss and informed him that the President had advised them to unit as one, but it was difficult.

“We were referred to Holgam at Kanifing where a statement was obtained from him,” he said, adding that Eric was asked to come with his council of elders to Holgam where they found the 1st accused.

“We were told at Holgam by the NDEA officers that they had a directive from the president that there were two options either to take our problem to court or to settle it within ourselves, but we agreed to settle it within ourselves,” Badjie further said.

He said the council of elders was dissolved, but Eric was the chairman, stating that they all agreed that anybody who goes against this decision had defied the president.

Still testifying, the second prosecution witness told the court that a meeting was convened by Malang Badjie, and he pulled out a letter and gave it to Rongo, because he Malang was not educated.

He said Rongo read the letter, and said the letter was from the president, and that the letter stated that the president said he had appointed Malang Badjie as the head of the council of elders.

He added that at that juncture, the village imam asked him to clarify that point, because they had agreed that Eric was the chairman, but the 1st accused said that it was not the work of the NDEA officers, they only wanted to maintain peace.

He said that when they went to the NDEA’s Holgam, they were told that what the 1st accused read was not true, adding that they asked the 1st accused, Rongo, but he said he did not know anything about the letter; he only read it.

The case at that juncture was adjourned till 29 June 2011.