The immediate and extended families of beleaguered businessman Alagie Conteh, CEO of Dabanani Electricals, have issued a statement expressing their solidarity with him. Writing on behalf of the families from his native Faraba Banta, Gunjur, Brikama, Sukuta, Brufut and Bakau, patriarch Alhaji Fansu Jung Conteh, former seyfo of Kombo East District wrote: “We vehemently condemn the recent freezing of the corporate bank of Dabanani company by the Government of The Gambia. There is no doubt that this act is politically motivated and in clear breach of Mr Conteh’s constitutionally guaranteed right to freedom of association and the specific right to belong to the political party of his choice.
“Mr Conteh has served this country diligently in a very senior capacity in the public service and has created hundreds of employment opportunities for Gambians using his entrepreneurial skills set and excellence. To this day, Dabanani Electrical Company remains the biggest private employer in the energy sector in this country.
“Through his kindness and largesse, he continues to be of critical support to the less privileged in Kombo and beyond. For the government to target such an illustrious and industrious citizen in the name of partisan politics is grossly unfair and unbecoming.
“We ask the government to refrain from such acts and to ensure that Mr Conteh is treated as a decent citizen with high moral standing in the country. Our extended family will continue to stand by him through thick and thin. No amount of intimidation from the government or any of its agencies will deter or distract Mr Conteh from pursuing the life he has chosen to live as an adult.
“Instead, the government should focus on creating the environment for a private sector-led industrial and economic growth. Not to suppress, oppress and intimidate good citizens just because they belong to a different political party. That’s unacceptable.”
The government froze the Bloom Bank account and unblocked it for about 24 hours after which Justice BA Bakre of the Banjul High Court issued an order freezing it pending the outcome of investigations supposedly by the Financial Intelligence Unit.