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City of Banjul
Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Koro’s cousin testifies in murder trial

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By Bruce Asemota

Dr Sanna Ceesay, a medical research scientist and first cousin of the late finance minister Ousman Koro Ceesay, yesterday testified as the 9th prosecution witness before Justice Ebrima Jaiteh in the ongoing trial of Yankuba Touray.
The former AFPRC member is standing trial for his alleged involvement in the murder of Koro Ceesay in June 1995.

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Dr Sanna Ceesay, a senior lecturer at the UTG school of medicine, told the court that he babysat and mentored the late Koro, whom he described as a principled person with an exemplary character.

He said Koro lost his life on the 23rd June, 1995 but he came to know about his demise in the morning of Saturday, 24th June1995.
On that day, according to the witness, he had arranged to have his daughter’s hairs braided at their family compound at Dippa Kunda but when he arrived, he realised that the compound was a little quieter than normal.

Dr Ceesay disclosed that he went round the back door but halfway, he met one Yambadem, Koro’s younger sister, and she screamed out saying “I no longer have a brother”.
The witness told the court that he looked at her and asked her what she meant and Yambadem replied that police had notified them that Koro Ceesay had died in an accident.
“I knew then that Koro’s father had gone to Georgetown to see my father.His grandmother was at home and I ran to the bedroom to check on her.But as soon as I entered the room I fainted. I later found myself leaning against the wall near Koro’s mother who was repeatedly saying ‘they killed my son’.”

Dr Ceesay said he went to Koro Ceesay’s residence in Serekunda Bambo and asked the first person he saw whether he had seen Koro Ceesay and his car that morning but the person replied in the negative.

The witness further told the court that he returned to the family compound in Dippa Kunda where he was informed that Koro’s government car was found burnt in Jamburr village.
He revealed that some family members visited the scene but he never did and was not aware whether Koro Ceesay has any family members in Jamburr.

Dr Sanna Ceesay disclosed that he saw the deceased’s car on Monday, 26th June 1995, the day of his funeral when the then minister of works and infrastructure, Bemba Tambedou came to the family compound and went with him to where the burnt car was moved at NAWEC station along the Senegambia road.

The witness explained that the black Mercedes Benz car was burnt until it turned white as it has gone through intense heat.
He told the court that Koro used to visit him every Sunday and he had seen him the last Sunday before he died.

Dr Ceesay further told the court that he presumed that Koro’s mother was refering to the government when she said they killed her son.
Responding to questions posed by defence counsel Abdoulie Sissoho, the witness told the court that he didn’t participate in the coroner’s inquest and was not aware whether the coroner’s inquest was done.

Dr Ceesay testified that the autopsy was conducted by Dr Fred Oldfield and he had seen it
Meanwhile, the case was adjourned to 28th May, for the appearance of TRRC subpoenaed witness to produce statements of PW6 Alagie Kanyi.

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