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City of Banjul
Saturday, December 5, 2020

Commission resumes with MGI, KGI matters

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The CEO of Mobicel Company, Bala Jassey reappeared before the Janneh Commission yesterday on matters relating to the company and MGI.
The hearing started with the commission asking Mr Jassey to furnish the commission with documents relating to his academic and professional qualifications.
Mr Jassey said he has submitted certain folders to the investigators which were produced and tendered by his counsel, Malick Mba’i as exhibits.

The telecom expert further told the inquiry that he had the management service agreements between his company and MGI but his company did not submit any service offer to MGI.
However he said there was no specific document outlining the service offer and he had never set his eyes on the agreement between MGI and the government.
Mr Jassey finally asserted that they did some work at the Office of the President but denied ever introducing exiled former General Saul Badjie to officials of MGI.

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Next to testify was, Essa Jallow, deputy commissioner general and head of domestic tax at the GRA with regard to tax payments by international telecoms companies working with The Gambia.
Mr Jallow explained to the inquiry that they could not find the files of Global Voice Group, TELL and Oratus in their system. He said taxes are levied on companies based on the certificates issued to them.

He adduced that he has the annual returns and summary of taxes for MGI from 2014 to 216.
According to him, with regard to corporate tax, MGI paid D749, 049.46 while on (VAT) and PAYE they paid D4, 034, 417. He said the total liability for MGI corporate tax was D9, 200, 252. 97.
The deputy CG revealed that tax exemptions can be made done legally if the President feels that it is in the interest of the state without going through GIEPA.
The tax officer also explained that the commissioner general has the power to ask any registered company to pay tax.

Meanwhile Assan Jallow, the PS at the Ministry of Agriculture, reappeared before the commission after he was asked to provide the documents relating to Japanese aids and grants.
According to him, the assistance provided by Japan included food aid and technical assistance among others.
However when Counsel Bensouda asked him whether he had brought a list of all the consignments of Japanese aids, he responded that he did not bring along the file and was not aware that it should have been submitted to the commission, and that he only brought the financial statement.

Mr Jallow at that point disclosed to the commission that the total deposits at the Central Bank were D212, 876, 695. 42 but he did not know the total value of the aid the Japanese government sent to The Gambia.
Counsel Bensouda asked him to provide to the commission with the list of all the aids supplied, and was further asked how much was supplied to KGI and how much KGI paid to the Central Bank.
He recalled that the contract with KGI for the supply of the aid started in 2012 and they received four consignments adding that the consignments with KGI were done without any agreement.
Sittings continue today.

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