By Yankuba Jallow
The protracted criminal trial involving Ebrima Jawara, Alasan Bah, Sulayman Manneh and Hassan Jallow has been withdrawn by the State on 3 August 2017 at the Banjul High Court, presided over by Hon Justice Zainab Jawara Alami.
The State was represented by L. Jarju, whilst Mr. Jawara was represented by C.E. Mene and M. Drameh, Alasan Bah was represented by H. Sisay Sabally, S. Gaye appeared for Sulayman Manneh and Hassan Jallow was represented by P. Gomez, holding brief for A.J. Njie.
L Jarju appearing for the State informed the court that the State had filed a nolle prosequi in respect of the case, in accordance with section 85 (1) (c) of the Constitution of the Republic of The Gambia and section 64 of the Criminal Procedure Code Cap 10 Vol 3 Revised Laws of The Gambia 2009. State Counsel Jarju then made an application to have the case discontinued accordingly.
C E Mene, the lead counsel for Mr Jawara and all other defense counsels informed the court that they had no objection to the State’s application.
In her ruling, Justice Zainab Jawara Alami summarized the charges the accused were charged with and the relevant laws under which they are punishable. She further quoted the relevant sections of the constitution and criminal procedure code dealing with nolle prosequis and discharged the 4 accused persons as well as their bail sureties.
Ebrima Jawara served as Permanent Secretary at both the Office of the President and the Ministry of Agriculture, Dr Alasan Bah is an ex Project Coordinator of the Rural Finance Project, Sulayman Manneh is an ex Account of the Rural Finance Project and Hassan Jallow is currently a Deputy Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Agriculture.
Readers would recall that a 32-count bill of indictment was served on the accused persons in March 2016, including, stealing, and destroying evidence, economic crime, and abuse of office, neglect of official duty, fraud and disobedience to statutory duty.