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Voire dire continues in editor Jobe and Co trial

Jun 7, 2013, 11:04 AM | Article By: Malamin ML Conteh

The voire dire trial to ascertain the voluntariness of statements obtained from the 1st accused person, Alhagie Jobe, continued yesterday at the Special Criminal Court in Banjul before Justice Emmanuel Nkea.

Alhagie Jobe, deputy editor-in-chief of the Daily Observer newspaper, was arraigned alongside one Mbye Bittaye.

Jobe was arraigned on a five-count charge of making an act with seditious intention, seditious publication, and possession of seditious publication, giving false information to public servant, and reckless and negligent, while Mbye Bittaye was arraigned on a single count of making preparation to do act with seditious intention.

It continued with the cross-examination of the independent witness, Ebrima Fatty, by the defence counsel, E. Jah.

The independent witness told the court that he could not remember the exact day he went to the NIA to witness the recording of the 1st accused statements, nor could he remember whether it occurs during the weekend or on a weekday.

Mr Fatty said he could not also remember the number of charges pressed against the 1st accused, but knows he faces different charges.

The witness added that he could not say he went to the NIA on 11 2013, but he was present at the time the 1st accused person’s statements were being obtained.

He added that all the three statements were not obtained on the same day.

“I did not know how many charges the 1st accused admitted to at the NIA. I know the 1st accused admitted to some of the charges, and denied others,” said the independent witness.

Ebrima Fatty admitted that the signature on the statements of Alhaji Jobe were his signatures, and that was how he signs.

PW2 in the mini-trial further told the court that all what he had said before the court was true regarding his presence at the NIA at the time Jobe’s statements were obtained.

The said statements were obtained voluntarily, he said.

The case continues on 11 June 2013.