TURBULENCE IN AGRICULTURE Arrests and dismissals of Agric and FAO officials

Abdoulie G. Dibba, Lamin FattyURR Correspondent &

Mustapha Jallow

Information reaching this medium has it that twelve officials under the Dr Kujejatou Manneh Joko Kutubo Sanyang  Ministry of the Agriculture including two FAO officials, were arrested on Thursday and Friday by plain clothes officers and some were taken to the Police Headquarters in Banjul.

According to sources, all the twelve were grantedFafanding Fatajo police bail and are supposed to report at the Police headquarters today, Monday 23 June 2014.Lamin Fatajo

However, before going to press, this medium could only confirm the arrest of the following officials-Joko Kutubo Sanyang Cowpea Project Coordinator, Fafanding Fatajo FASDEP Coordinator, Lamin Fatajo, Rural Finance Project Coordinator, Chernor Mballow of Agribusiness Services, Musa Dampha, Deputy Director Communication, Education and Extension Services, Dr Kujejatou Manneh FASDEP Technical Project Manager of FAO, Amie Jallow, Project Component Coordinator of FAO and the Regional Director for Agriculture in URR Mr Mbemba Dahaba.

Sources further informed that Dr Kujejatou Manneh and Amie Jallow were arrested at Jenoi in the Lower River Region of the Gambia while attending training.

Talking to some of the arrestees on Saturday, they confirmed that they were arrested but are now on police bail.

Asked whether they are charged, the arrestees who spoke to this reporter asserted that they are not charged and would be reporting on bail today.

When contacted the Police Public Relation Officer ASP. David Kujabi stated that he cannot say anything now regarding the arrestees.

In another development, The Regional Director for Agriculture in URR Mr Mbemba Dahaba was on Thursday 19 June detained at the Basse Police Station for at least three hours before being granted bail. Foroyaa visited the said police station and found Mr Dahaba behind bars.

When asked Mr Dahaba said he does not know what he has committed.

A Senior CID Officer at the Basse police station Mr Njie was approached but he said he does not know anything about the detention of Mr Dahaba. However, a source at the Basse regional agriculture office informs that CID officers went for Mr Dahaba to answer to the Basse police station based on an executive order from Banjul.

Mr Dahaba was later reached on telephone and asked if he was granted bail. He said he is granted bail in the sum of D500,000 with three Gambian sureties who according him deposited their identification cards. He said he was asked to report to the Banjul Police Station on Monday June 23rd.

Meanwhile, a Press Release emanating from the Office of the President broadcast over the GRTS June 20th 2014 informs the general public that following the recent dialogue with the people’s tour, dubbed Vision 2016 self sufficiency in rice production by President Jammeh and the subsequent discovery of the ‘disappointing performance and abysmal failure of multi million dollar agricultural projects since 1994’, the following employees of the Ministry of Agriculture have been dismissed forthwith:

Foday Jadama Regional Director, Kutubo Sanyang Project Coordinator cow pea, Mr Kebba Drammeh Senior Agricultural Officer Wellingara Model Centre, Musa Dampha Communications Education Extention Service, Fafanding Fatajo Projects Coordinator FASDEP, Lamin Fatajo Project Coordinator Rural Finance, Miss Amie Jallow Project Coordinator MDG-c, Mrs Kujay Manneh, FASDEP, Dr Saikou E. Sanyang Regional Director of Agriculture NBR, Dr Sanyang Regional Director of Agriculture CRR, Mr Mballow Agric Business, Mr Dahaba Regional Director of Agriculture URR.