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Trial of former DG Food Standards & Hygiene proceeds

Dec 15, 2011, 2:03 PM | Article By: Bakary Samateh

The case involving Momodu Lamin Nget, former Director General of Food Standards and Hygiene of the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare proceeded yesterday at the Banjul Magistrates’ Court.

Testifying under cross-examination was Lamin J. Gassama, an officer of the National Drug Enforcement Agency.

He was asked by the defence counsel, whether it was as a result of the petition letter the accused person wrote to the Office of the President, which led to the re-arrest of Bolong Jobarteh and his co-accused persons, who were brought to the court to answer the same charge. Gassama in response told the court that he knew at the time that the accused wrote a petition, when Bolong and other accused persons were discharged.

He told the court that the Office of the President asked the office of Inspector General of Police to investigate the allegations made by the accused person in his petition letter.

Gassama added that, as a result of the accused person’s petition letter, they received a directive from the Office of the President for the accused persons to be arrested and charged with giving false information.

He denied it, when the defence counsel put it to him that they did not receive any directives to arrest and charge the accused person.

Gassama said he was part of the team which arrested the accused person.

He further told the court that the accused person’s first arrest was because of his involvement in corrupt practices, by allowing flour that was not good for human consumption to reach the market.
According to him, in March 2011, the office of the Executive Director of the NDEA received a directive to respond to a petition written by the accused person sent to the Office of the President, in which Nget claimed that his co-accused, namely Bolong Jobarteh, Karamba Keita and Kemo Touray were walking as freemen in the streets, while he (Nget) was subjected to a bail condition without being taken to court.

Told that the accused person was arrested on 28th June 2010, while Bolong Jorbateh and co-accused persons were discharged on 22nd June 2011, the witness responded, “yes, that is correct.”

The case at that juncture was adjourned till 5 January 2012.