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Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Witness’ absence delays Sabally trial

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Mr Sabally who was also minister for presidential affairs is facing an eight-count charge of economic crime, abuse of office, neglect of official duty and giving false information. He is accused of causing economic loss to SSHFC in the amount of 402,500 dalasis by unduly influencing SSHFC. Prosecutors further said Sabally caused economic loss to the government of The Gambia in the amount of 38,424 dalasis being money received as per diem allowance for a trip to South Africa in order to attend the inauguration ceremony of President Jacob Zuma, which he neglected to attend. The defendant allegedly committed the offence while serving as secretary general, head of the civil service and minister for presidential affairs. He however denied any culpability.

At the resumed hearing in continuation of the trial yesterday, the chief prosecutor, Hadi Saleh Barkun said his witnesses, Edward Graham, managing director at SSHCF and the financial director were at the National Assembly presenting a budget report. 

“I have a little problem,” Barkun said when the judge told him to call his next witness into the witness dock. “Mr Graham and the financial director are presenting a report at the National Assembly. The clerk at the Parliament said both men have to appear at the same time at the National Assembly.” Sabally’s lawyer, Antouman Gaye did not object to the application for adjournment. “This is the Parliament. After all they are one that makes the laws that are implemented in court,” Gaye said before the judge adjourned the case till today.


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