More Bank M Ds Testify at the Janneh Commission

By Yankuba Jallow

More bank executives have appeared at the Monday sitting of the Janneh Commission, set up by government to probe into the assets and financial dealings of former president Jammeh and his associates.

On Monday, the Managing Directors of Trust, Skye and Access Banks, gave testimonies before Commissioner Janneh and his team of Commissioners, regarding the financial transactions in connection with the GNPC account.

First to face the Commissioners was the Managing Director of Trust Bank Gambia Limited, Mr. Sallah, who said that on 10 August 20…, the dalasi and dollar accounts were opened for the Ministry of Petroleum by Dodou Bammy Jagne, Amadou Njie and others; that for the dalasi account, there was no transaction, meaning nothing was paid into the account and nothing was also paid out.

He said for the dollar account, on October 13, 2017, an amount of 258,372.13 dollars was the only customer generated transaction, adding that 258,565.25 was the balance of the account at the end of July. For the accounts depicting the Ministry of petroleum, the dalasi account statement was tendered and marked as exhibit even though it has no transaction and the dollar account statement was also tendered and admitted as exhibit by the Commission.

For the Gambia National Petroleum Company (GNPC) accounts, Mr. Sallah said there are five accounts bearing the name GNPC; that there are three US dollar accounts and two dalasi accounts and that there were transactions for all the five accounts. He reiterated that the accounts were opened on different dates and times and the first signatories to the first account opened on May 4th2004, were Alieu M. Ngom, Mambury Njie, Lamin M. Njie, Wir Chung Ding and Mei Char Lee. He said the last two names where Chinese.

Mr. Sallah said in April 2005, Siaka S.A. Camara, Alieu Ngom and Teneng Jaiteh were added as signatories; that on 18th December 2006, three people were added in the names of Siaka Camara, Elizabeth and Ousman Jammeh; that in February 2008, Momodou O.S. Badjie was added as a signatory; that in January 2011, Ousman Jammeh was deleted as a signatory and Madung Sanyang was added thereafter whilst in September 2012, Sallah said Tsung Wen Shiao was added.

He articulated that Lamin Nyabally, Ismaila Sanyang and Isatou Auber were all added as signatories in February 2015, and that in March 2015, Alfred B. Belford was also added as a signatory to the accounts; that in July, 2016, Alfred Belford, Baboucar Njie and Alieu Sanyang were signatories to the accounts.

He said the first dollar account was opened on the 18th of May 2004, the second dollar account on the 29th September 2010 and on the 5thNovember 2014, the third dollar account was opened.

“The third dollar account has 2,218 dollars as balance in the account,” he said.

He said the first dalasi account was opened on May 18th, 2004, and the second dalasi account was opened on April 29th, 2011. All the transactions and documents were tendered and admitted as exhibits by the Commission.

David Aluko, the Managing Director of Access Bank Gambia Limited, told the Commissioners that his service as the Managing Director of the Bank started in September, 2014.

He said GNPC has two dalasi and two dollar accounts at the Access Bank, adding that the Ministry of Petroleum has no account with his Bank.

On the dates when the accounts were opened in his Bank, Mr. Aluko said the first and second dalasi accounts were opened on September 5thand 6th  respectively in the year 2008, whilst the first dollar account was opened on March 3rd, 2009 and the second dollar account was opened on November 28th, 2014.

He said Momodou Badjie, the then Managing Director of GNPC, Fafa Sanyang and Ebrima O. Camara were the signatories of the dalasi accounts till August 13th, 2013 when the mandate changed. He said in addition to Ex-President Yahya Jammeh and Momodou Sabally, the erstwhile Secretary General and Presidential Affairs Minister, were added as signatories to the dollar accounts. The document depicting a change of signatory dated August 13th, 2013, was tendered and marked as an exhibit.

He affirmed that since Jammeh and Sabally took over as signatories to the accounts, the first transaction was on December 16th, 2014, and the last transaction was done on June 24th, 2015. He said as at the time Jammeh and Sabally were taking over, the account balance was 321,817.84 dollars.

“Jammeh and Sabally made 6 transactions amounting to 390,076.27 dollars” he said.

He said the first transaction was an instruction to pay 100,000 dalasi to one Sanna Jarju signed by the former President and Kalilou Bayo. He reiterated that 72,074.83 dollars was transferred to GICEC and it was paid into their GT Bank account. He reiterated that 13,890.30 dollars equivalent to 9,350 pound starlings was paid to one Isa Keita in Sweden for living expenses. He said there was a transaction where a transfer of 4,091.14 dollars was made to Amat Bittaye in a City University in Columbia. Further, there was a transaction where 125,000 dollars was transferred to GAI Enterprise Construction and finally 2550 pound sterling transferred to one Hydara for tuition fee.

In his testimony, the Managing Director of Skye Bank, Mr. Adegbulugbe Adedoyin, said he received a directive to withdraw 32 million dollars signed by Momodou Sabally and the former President. He said Momodou Sabally made the following withdrawals from the bank and all the amounts were in dollars: 650,000.oo; 150,000.00; 450,000.00; 650,000.00 and 32,000.00.

He said he received another directive to transfer an amount of 224,900 to the Organisation of Islamic Conference, and this was signed by Sabally; that there was a transfer of 195,284 dollars to one David Forge in New York. He noted that 195,348.84 dollars was transferred to the office of the President and Access Bank Gambia Limited, from a directive signed by Kalilou Bayo and Yahya Jammeh.

“There was a withdrawal of 200,000 dollars in December and the withdrawal was done by Sanna Jarju and signed by the former president and Kalilou Bayo,” he said.

He said they transferred 65,403 Euros, equivalent to 77,000 dollars, to BPI Tourism and Service.

“We paid 125,715.33 dollars to Gambia International Airline’s Account” he said.

He agreed to transactions that relate to the payment of tuition fees for students citing the payment of 11,492 to two individuals by the name Saihou Omar Njie and another.

On the 26th April 2016, Mr. Momodou Badjie authorised the transfer of 200,000 dollars to a foreign account. Sitting continues today.