False Information charge against Bory Saidy Withdrawn

By Yankuba Jallow

The false information trial involving Bory J. Saidy, has been withdrawn from court by attorneys from the Attorney General’s Chambers.

The attorneys in their statement in court said they are ready to dissociate themselves with the case and applied for the case to be withdrawn from the court.

The presiding Magistrate Omar Cham of Brikama Magistrates Court in his ruling said he relied on the powers conferred on him by Section 64 of the Criminal Code of the Gambia that the accused person was discharged and the matter struck out as well.

The trial of the former Acting Manager of Air Traffic Services at the Banjul International Airport, Mr. Borry J. Saidy, began in January 2015 but suffered series of setbacks. He was alleged to have written to the office of the former president Yahya Jammeh, for unfair treatment at his workplace. He has been denied two ‘no case submissions’ in the past for the court to strike out the case.

Readers could recall that Counsel Touray applied for a ‘no case submission’ because the matter at hand was not a criminal matter; that in criminal proceedings, the law takes its course. Counsel Touray submitted that the petition which generated this criminal action was addressed to Yahya Jammeh and that there has since been a constitutional replacement of his government. He further argued that the accused person exercised his freedom by virtue of Section 25 (f) which gives him the right to petition the executive; that there is no law in the country which caters for citizens to petition the executive except the constitution and that there is nowhere under section 25 where this right has been derogated.

The prosecution argued that he is charged with ‘giving false information to a civil servant’ contrary to Section 114 of the Criminal Code of the Gambia and the matter started a year after the Amendment Act was enacted. Inspector Gibba told the court that its decision is a matter of contest because the court ruled in the year 2014 against the defence’s application of a ‘no case submission’ and the court has no jurisdiction to rule against its previous ruling. In addition, he said Counsel Touray relied on Section 166 of the Constitution but he reminded the Court of its previous ruling that the office of the President, Vice President, Speaker or Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly, Secretary of state or a member of the National Assembly are all public offices and referred the court to the case of The State vs Abdoulie Conteh, Gambia Law Report 2002 and 2008.