Gunjur Imam Slams Corrupt Public Officials
Nov 5, 2009, 1:20 PM
They are the former acting Financial Director, Yusupha M. Jaiteh, and former Commercial Director, Abdoulie Dibba. They were convicted to jointly pay a fine of over D15 million.
They were however acquitted and discharged on counts 2, 4 and 5.
State prosecutors in count one accused Abdoulie Dibba and Yusupha M. Jaiteh, that between 2009 and 2010 in Banjul whilst holding public office, willfully and recklessly caused monetary loss to Asset Management and Recovery Corporation (AMRC) to the tune of D15,450, 000 by selling rice and cement to various individuals on credit without proper collaterals.
The charge sheet in count two stated that Abdoulie Dibba and Yusupha M. Jaiteh, between 2009 and 2010 in Banjul, willfully and recklessly caused monetary loss to the AMRC to the tune of D7,200,000 by fraudulently converting same to the use of Samcad Holding.
Count three read that Abdoulie Dibba and Yusupha M. Jaiteh, between 2009 and 2010 in Banjul, in abuse of the authority of their office, took a loan of D67,200,000 on behalf of the AMRC without the necessary approval of the Board of Directors.
Count four stated that Abdoulie Dibba and Yusupha M. Jaiteh, and another person at large, between 2009 and 2010 in Banjul, in abuse of the authority of their office, took a loan of D49,751,520, on behalf of the AMRC without the necessary approval of the Board of Directors.
Count five stated that Abdoulie Dibba and Yusupha M. Jaiteh, and another person at large, between 2009 and 2010 in Banjul, fraudulently converted same to the use of Samcad Holding.
In his judgment, Justice Amadi said the prosecution had proved the allegations in counts one and three, and therefore he found the accused persons guilty in counts one and three.
However, he added, the prosecution failed to lay sufficient evidence on counts 2, 4 and 5, adding that the evidence of the 2nd accused person on counts 2 and 5 remained unchallenged.
He said the accused persons were acquitted and discharged on count 2, 4 and 5.
After the court’s verdict, the state counsel O. Danso said they were relying on section 145 of CPC in respect of count one and three to ask for compensation.
She said there was no criminal record of the convicts.
Replying to counsel’s application for compensation, defence counsel L.S. Camara said he had no doubt what the section counsel was relying on was asking for compensation.
He said the provision of the application for compensation is laid down in section 145 (4) of the CPC, which is recovery by way of civil suit.
In his plea of mitigation on behalf of the convicts, counsel Camara said the 2nd and 3rd accused persons as stated by the prosecution were first time offenders, with a combined career of over 50 years.
He said each had a career service of 25 years.
“The convicts have nurtured AMRC since its inception, particularly the 3rd accused person and I had the privilege of working with them in the said institution,” counsel said.
He said the convicts were both respective heads of their families with several children and respective breadwinners, adding that the convicts were “very remorseful”.
He said the convicts had not benefitted from any act which they were convicted on, which was the special circumstance of the case the court could put into consideration.
“I refer the court to section 29 sub-section 3 of the Criminal Procedure Code not to impose a custodial sentence, but for the convicts to pay a fine instead of imprisonment,” counsel said.
He adduced that the convicts were convicted on economic crime and abuse of office, which were counts 1 and 3 under the CPC.
He then referred the court to section 6 (2) of the economic crime specified offences Act and subsection 3 of the same Act, and urged the court to temper justice with mercy.
In passing sentence, Justice Amadi said that after listening to the application for compensation by both counsel, and the plea of mitigation on behalf of the convicts, the convicts were jointly liable in count one to pay a fine of D15,364,300in default to serve 6 years in prison.
He said for count three, which stated that the accused took a loan on behalf of the AMRC without the necessary approval of the Board of Directors, they were jointly fined D5,000 in default to serve 3 years in prison.