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City of Banjul
Friday, September 25, 2020

State slams three ex-agric officials with charges

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Lamin Fatajo, Lamin Mass and Ada Gaye, respectively, the former permanent secretary, the former coordinator and former acting finance manager of the Rural Finance Project of the Ministry of Agriculture, have been charged in connection with payment of $14, 000 to one Sonko Fofana without seeking approval from International Fund for Agricultural Development.

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Lamin Fatajo and Lamin Mass were in court yesterday to take their plea, but Ada Gaye was not present.  This prompted the judge, Simon Abi, to enquire about Ms Gaye’s whereabouts, but the defence lawyers, Lamin Camara and Borry Touray, said they were not aware that the former PS has also been charged.

“This case emanated from the Banjul Magistrates Court and as of the last sitting, there was no third accused person in the matter,” Camara said.

At this point, the prosecutor, Agie Adam Ceesay, asked for an adjournment to serve Ms Gaye with the charge sheet. The case resumes March 16 for plea taking.

Mass and Fatajo are accused of approving the payment of $18, 000 as sitting allowances to some committee members set up to review the micro-finance promotion centre that they were not entitled to which is detrimental to the economy of The Gambia.

Prosecutors also accused them of authorising the payment of D117,521 as salary advance for the project staff in contravention of the project’s finance and administrative procedure manual.

 Ada Gaye is accused of neglecting her official duties for the payment of $18, 000 to Sonko Fofana.

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