SABALLY REFUSES TO TAKE PLEA

SABALLY REFUSES TO TAKE PLEA

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The former Director General of The Gambia Radio and Television Services (GRTS) has refused to take his plea on charges filed against him before Justice EO Dada of the High Court in Banjul.

Momodou Sabally declined to take his plea following the reading of the first count of bill of indictment to him. He said he does not intend to take his plea, arguing that the matter has been already decided. He said a Nolle Prosequi (when a case against the defendant is being dropped) was filed in the case in 2015.

State counsel, AM Yusuf said it is true that a similar matter was in court in 2015 and somewhere in the midway of the matter, the state filed a Nolle Prosequi and the accused was discharged but not acquitted.

He argued that it is settle law that nolle prosequi is a ban on subsequent prosecution on the said charges, urging the court to order the accused to accordingly take his plea. He said the matter is a fresh bill of indictment.

The presiding judge adjourned the matter to today at 9:30 am for ruling.

A former Secretary General, Head of Civil Service and Minister for Presidential Affairs, Momodou Sabally alleged to have caused economic loss to Social Security and Housing Finance Corporation to the tune of D402,500 by unduly influencing the Corporation to fund a programme titled Youth Career Development Programme organised by one Mariama Sillah without recourse to due process about the month of May 2014 at Banjul.

On count two of Economic Crime (specified offences), it alleges that Sabally caused economic loss to the Government of The Gambia to the tune of D38, 424 being money he received as per diem for a trip to South Africa in order to attend the inauguration ceremony of President Jacob Zuma which he neglected to attend while serving as Secretary General, Head of Civil Service and Minister for Presidential Affairs the same year.

On charge of abuse of office, Sabally is accused of flagrant abuse of his office as the Secretary General, Head of Civil Service and Minister for Presidential Affairs and in blatant disregard of due process influenced and caused Social Security and Housing Finance to sponsor a programme titled Youth Career Development Programme organised by one Mariama Sillah.

The state also claimed that Sabally sometime in May 2014 at Banjul committed an offence to wit: while serving as Secretary General, Head of Civil Service and Minister for Presidential Affairs and while being part to the Gambian delegation to South Africa to attend the inauguration of President Jacob Zuma, willfully and negligently delayed the departure of the Vice President’s flight from South Africa for 45 minutes and there by committed an offence.

It is further alleged that sometime in the year 2014 at Banjul, Sabally committed an offence to wit: in flagrant abuse of his office as the Secretary General, Head of Civil Service and Minister for Presidential Affairs presented two vehicles being property of Alasan Ndoye to His Excellency the President as a gift.

Sabally is also accused to have sometime in the year 2014 at Banjul, committed an offence to wit: in flagrant abuse of his office as the Secretary General, Head of Civil Service and Minister for Presidential Affairs with intend to annoy and cause financial loss to Alasan Ndoye, informed His Excellency the President that the said Alasan Ndoye had given two vehicles to His Excellency the President which information he knew or believed to be false.

by Fatou Sowe