Yanks says Koro Ceesay was at airport on the day he died

Aug 28, 2020, 12:41 PM | Article By: Alagie Baba

Yankuba Touray, a former member of the AFPRC Council has told the High Court that Ousman Koro Ceesay was at the airport on the day ex-Chairman Yahya A.J.J. Jammeh was leaving for Ethiopia for the African Unit Summit.

Touray said he was part of the presidential convoy to the airport on the night the ex-military leader was leaving for the East African country for the summit. He testified that he didn’t go with his car to the airport instead he was in the same vehicle with ex-President Yahya Jammeh and they both dressed in American camouflage uniform. He said the other two persons in the vehicle where Lieutenant Bajinka and the driver, Pa Malick. He said this was between 10 p.m. and 11 p.m.

He disagreed with the testimony of Alagie Kanyi that he (Touray) received the vice chairman of AFPRC, who was Edward Singhatey and three others Peter Singhatey, Tumbul Tamba and Pa Alieu Gomez in his house at Kerr Sering. He adduced that on that day and night he did not receive any of these persons.

“Did you see or met Alagie Kanyi, Peter Singhatey, Edward Singhatey, Tumbul Tamba and Pa Alieu Gomez?” Lawyer Abdoulie Sisoho asked.

“No,” Yankuba Touray replied.

He testified that the Presidential Convoy drove by the Serrekunda Highway and straight to the airport. He explained that after the departure ceremony and protocols, the Chairman boarded the airport and he was officially shown-off by the Vice Chairman Second Lieutenant Edward Singhatey, the army commander who was Colonel Baboucar Jatta, Director General of the National Security Services and the Inspector General of Police.

“Let’s move back to the State House, apart from yourself and Yahya Jammeh as members of the AFPRC Council, was any member of the council part of the convoy that drove from the State House to the airport?” Sisoho asked.

“No,” Yankuba Touray answered.

 “Can you tell the court who received the President at the airport that night he was leaving?” the Lawyer asked.

“The Vice Chairman of the AFPRC, Lieutenant Edward Singhatey” Yankuba Touray said.

The Lawyer further asked: “There is a theory put by Pa Habib Mbye, prosecution witness five, before the court that yourself and Edward Singhatey drove intentionally and blocked Ousman Koro Ceesay’s car, the former minister of Finance. Is that true?”

Yankuba Touray said: “No.”

He said Edward Singhatey was not part of the presidential convoy to the airport, adding Singhatey was the one who received the ex-junta leader at the airport. Touray testified that at that night he did not go to the car park inside the airport contrary to the testimony that his vehicle and Edward’s vehicles were used to block Koro Ceesay’s vehicle from moving.

“Did you see Mr Ousman Koro Ceesay at the airport?” Sisoho asked, and in his response, Touray replied in the affirmative. He said he did not go with Ousman Koro Ceesay together to the airport because he was not part of the presidential convoy.

“Did you have personal relationship with him?” the Lawyer asked. Yankuba Touray said “No.”

Sisoho asked again “do you have access to his personal security arrangements?” and Touray replied “no”.

He said he did not contact his wife and his two orderlies who were Ensa Mendy and Jali Musa Sowe, adding his orderlies were not having mobile phones.

He said after the President left, the President’s convoy left first before the others left the airport. He said he was driven to the State House by Pa Malang who was the President’s official driver with the presidential convoy. He added that he was all alone with Pa Malang in the President’s car. He said he arrived at the State House at 11 p.m. and 12 midnight, adding he had a chat with the State Guard Commander, Captain Lang Tombong Tamba. He said after the chit-chat with Commander Tamba, he went home straight, adding this was between 12 midnight and 1 a.m.

He testified that upon arriving home the sentry let him in and he saw his wife watching television with people in the living room.

At this juncture the case was adjourned to the 31st August 2020 at 2 p.m.