By: Fabakary B. Ceesay
Two senior Police officers, Assistant Commissioner Buba Jassey of the Gambia Police force and Deputy Commissioner Ken Mendy, both of West Coast Region Police Command, on Monday 27th and Tuesday 28th July 2020 testified in the on-going trial involving Chief Superintendent Muhammed Kanteh, respectively.
Kanteh is standing trial on a charge of official negligence which he pleaded not guilty.
Testifying before Magistrate Peter Adoh Nche of the Brikama Magistrates’ Court, Assistant Commissioner Buba Jassey informed the Court that on 26th January 2020, whiles at his post at the Brikama Police station, the accused person Chief Superintendent Muhammed kanteh as the Operations officer of the Brikama region, came into his office and told him two of his brothers were stabbed and he was going to see them. Officer Jassey added that kanteh left and drove off.
Assistant Commissioner Jassey adduced before the Court that after the accused left his office, he also informed his immediate supervisor deputy Commissioner Ken Mendy who asked him where the accused was and he responded that the accused has left. Jassey added that Ken asked him who gave permission for the accused to go and he Jassey responded that was the reason he was informing him about the accused.
Testifying further Assistant Commissioner Jassey it was Commissioner Famara Jallow who was in position to give permission at the time. He said Commissioner Jallow asked Ken where the accused was.
At this point Magistarte Nche asked the witness whether he was with Ken and Famara Jallow at the same time, he responded that he was at Brikama Station whiles Ken and Famara were at Yundum station.
Going further Jassey indicated that he later got a call that he should arrest his operation officer Kanteh. He added that he was not on the ground when the order to arrest Kanteh was conveyed to him but he also contact the officer on the ground and also informed Deputy Commissioner Ken Mendy about the order to arrest officer Muhammed Kanteh.
He asserted that he then informed the Police Intervention Unit Commander to effect the arrest of the accused person adding that he found the PIU failed to arrest the accused. He added that he demanded from PIU commander why not arrest the accused as it was a directive from the command. Jassey said Commander Famara Jallow instructed him to escort the accused to Burusubi Police station and PIU officers left with the accused person to Burusubi station.
Assistant Commissioner Jassey said on 26th January they were on a general standby due to a demonstration that was taking place and that the accused was also on a standby responsible for general operations.
At this juncture, an orderly of the Court walks up to the reporter and demanded that he stop writing which the reporter refused to do. The officer went to the magistrate and murmured into his ears and without asking, he ordered the reporter out of the Court room.
It was due that the reporter missed the cross examination of the witness by defence counsels led by Lamin S. Camara, Lamin L. Darboe and Yankuba Darboe.
The prosecutors were Inspector Essa S. Corr, Chief Inspector Amat Touray and head of Police prosecution department Ebrima Sanneh.
The next witness was Deputy Commissioner Ken Mendy of West Coast Region. See next publication for his evidence in chief and cross examination.