26 C
City of Banjul
Monday, October 26, 2020

Startling revelations at SMJ trial

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In his final testimony yesterday, Mr John further revealed to the court that during their data base training at TANGO, he inquired from the trainers why the training was not covered by the media during the opening and closing of the training but no answer was given to him by them.

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He testified that four days later after the training, [Pw2] Mustapha Jaw called him to inform him that he had been selected as supervisor, while he was selected as a participant.

He further told the magistrate that they had a meeting with the PW 2 at his residence and during the meeting Mr Jaw told them that they were supposed to have a supervisor training and that they made it clear to him that they would not participate in the survey if they were not provided with T-Shirts and identification cards

According to the state witness, when (Pw2) Mr Jaw returned, he gave them feedback and informed them that during the event transportation would be allocated to them while payments would be made after the event.

 He recalled that Mr Jaw then summoned a meeting at his house again and informed them the day they should start the survey exercise covering Banjul and Fajara.

Regarding their payments for the survey, the witness recalled that they were offered to be paid in advance or after the survey exercise but they opted to be paid in advance.

He added that they agreed that if there was a clearance and rest of the materials provided, they would commence the survey, noting that they went to the National Intelligence Agency headquarters to give statements.

The witness further told the court that while coming from the NIA Office, he told the accused that they were given money without conducting the exercise but PW2 told him any update he got from the organisers, he would inform them.

 The state witness added that four days later, a supervisor from Kanifing Municipality (KMC) came to Banjul and called Mustapha Jaw and Jaw in turn called him to come and meet him.

At that juncture, the lead counsel, Barrister Lamin Camara alongside Segga Gaye quickly stood up and objected to that piece of evidence given by the witness. Camara argued that the witness was giving hearsay evidence and urged the court to expunge that piece of evidence.

State Counsel Baboucarr Drammeh, on the other hand submitted that the evidence given by the witness was not hearsay and consequently referred the court to section 80 of the Evidence Act.

He finally appealed to the court to overrule the objection and allow the witness to continue with his evidence.

In his ruling, Magistrate Samsideen Conteh upheld the objection and expunged that piece of evidence on grounds that it was hearsay evidence.

Further testifying before the court, the witness disclosed to the court that when they met along Independence Drive in Banjul, where the KMC supervisor told them that he was sent by the accused to receive money from Mustapha Jaw (PW2) whom he said counted and gave it to him and they all signed.

Meanwhile, under cross-examination by the defence, the witness acknowledged that he participated during the entire course of the training.

“Who was the overall authority at the training?” lawyer Camara quizzed.

“Actually I don’t know,” Mr John responded.

“You told the court you saw questionnaires during the training. Could you remember the whole questionnaires where you are?”

“No I cannot because the questionnaires were so bulky and I don’t know the author of the questionnaires.”

Hearing resumes today.

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