Journalist Abdoulie Ceesay Escaped, Prison Officer Tells Court

By Kebba Jeffang

An official from the Gambia Prisons Service on Thursday, April 21, 2016 informed the court that remanded radio journalist Alhaji Abdoulie Ceesay, Manager Teranga FMAlhagie Abdoulie Ceesay, the Managing Director of Taranga FM, has escaped while being hospitalized in Banjul.

Mr. Kalifa Bojang, the Principal Officer (PO) at the GPS made such revelation in court before Justice E.O. Dada in a matter that was expected for adoption of briefs.

Announcing their representations, counsel Drammeh appeared for the state whilst lawyer Combeh Gaye represented the accused person.

At this point, the state counsel told the court that the accused person is currently admitted in hospital and that they could not secure his appearance in court.

“I have just been served with the defence’s brief and in the absence of the accused person, we are asking for an adjournment,” said State Counsel Mr. Drammeh.

However, the defence counsel Madam Gaye said there is no explanation given as to where the accused person is. She said the better person to explain this to the court is the person right in the court.

“My lord I have told the court the whereabouts of the accused person after I got briefing from the prison officer,” said the state counsel.

Defence counsel Gaye said “I am the counsel for the accused person and I deserve to be told the state of health of my client. Just saying that he is sick and admitted is not enough.”

At this juncture, Mr. Kalifa Bojang, the principal officer at GPS informed the court “the accused person was sick and being taken to the Edward Francis Small Teaching Hospital in Banjul on the 14th April, 2016. He was admitted up to 20th April, 2016 and between the hours of midnight and 2am; he escaped from the hospital and we are still searching for him.”

The lawyer for the accused said there have been conflicting reports about her client. She said for the high court being a court of record, it is only fair that the prison officer tells the court about the state of her client.

“We the lawyers owe it to the court to always state facts,” said Lawyer Gaye.

At this juncture, the matter was adjourned to 2nd May, 2016 at 9:30am.