Kerr Serign rape trial progresses
Tuesday, April 17, 2012
The criminal trial involving the State against one Landing Sanneh resumed yesterday before the Special Criminal Court in Banjul, presided over by Justice Emmanuel Nkea.
The accused is charged with the offence of rape contrary to Section 121 of the Criminal Code Cap 10 Volume III, Laws of The Gambia. The particulars of the offence stated that on the 13th March 2011 at Kerr Serign around Senegambia in the West Coast Region, the accused, Landing Sanneh unlawfully had carnal knowledge of a teenager without her consent. The prosecution led by Simon Semalemba, State Counsel called two witnesses, a police officer and the said victim’s elder sister to testify before the court.
In his evidence, Mamat Houma, a police officer attached to Bundung police station stated that on the 13th March 2011, whilst he was on duty at the said police station, the victim’s mother (name withheld) together with the victim came to the station to lodge a complain that her daughter had been raped by the accused. The witness indicated that he accompanied them to the RVTH in Banjul and the victim was examined by one Dr. Abdoulie Secka and a medial report was issued.
The said medical report was tendered and admitted as exhibit A. The witness, Mamat Houma further indicated that prior to accompanying them to the RVTH in Banjul, he interrogated the victim. The witness revealed that during the interrogation, the victim alleged that each time her mother sends her to the market, the accused always call her, give her mint and have an affair with her.
In his response to questions posed to him by defence counsel, Ngozi Gbuji of the Legal Aid Agency, the witness disclosed that the victim informed him that the accused has had several affairs with her. The witness told the court that he arrested the accused, after the victim’s mother came to the police station to lodge complaint. In her evidence, the victim’s elder sister (name withheld) told the court that she recognized the accused because the accused raped her teenage sister.
The witness recalled that on the 13th March 2011 at about 2:00pm whilst she was cooking, she saw the victim coming from the accused person’s compound. She said as she saw the way her younger sister was walking, she suspected something was missing. The witness revealed that her younger sister was walking like a girl who had just been circumcised, adding that as she noticed her unusual movement, she then held her hands and took her to her mother.
Hearing continues on the 18th April 2012 to enable the court make arrangement for Sarahule interpreter.
Author: Sidiq Asemota