Disturbing Revelations at the Commission of Inquiry into Former President’s Assets and Financial Dealings

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Lead Counsel Amie Bensouda Commission on Inquiry into Jammeh’s Asset and Finance Management

Two days into its sitting the Commission of inquiry set up by the New government in the Gambia headed by Suraha Janneh, Bai Mass Saine and Abeosy George as members and Amie Bensouda as General Counsel has disturbing revelations on how public funds were transacted. The revelations were related to private accounts that were opened at the Guarantee Trust Bank the Gambia. The managing Director of the Bank gave detail information on an account named Gambia Revenue Recovery Account.

In total an amount of $54 Million Dollars were deposited into the account between 2013 and February 2014. and $47 Million dollars were withdrawn from that account. A total of 43 withdrawals were made from the same account detailing payments ranging from student scholarships, personal payments to Gambians and huge transactions amounting to millions of Dalasis. The details are mind bugging and indicates financial mismanagement the country has ever seen.

The most disturbing portion of the account transactions was the blatant violations of the accounting principles and government guidelines on how to handle public and government financing. It appears that instead of following the constitutional and accounting practices act for the Minister of Finance and accountant general being the signatories and approvals to opening government accounts, Yahya Jammeh personally was a signatory to these accounts and was running his own expenditure accounts. He in fact had his Secretary Generals from Njogu Bah, Momodou Sabally, Aki Bayo, Momodou Sallah and Lamin Nyabally all as signatories to such accounts for the sole purpose of running the personal transactions of the President and his office. Several millions of dalasis were withdrawn by Njogu Bah and Momodou Saballly at various times at the instruction of the President.

As the inquiries continue, a clear negligence of duties and or dereliction of oath of office engaging in massive corruption and diversion of public funds by the President and these public officials. It is without a doubt beyond the duty and scope of the Secretary General office of the President to be a signatory to any public bank accounts or handling of revenue for anything relating to government transactions. While the commission is just getting started, Gambians should brace themselves on what is to come. It has been a long established fact that Gambians deliberately aided in any shape and form in helping Yahya Jammeh loot public resources. Many citizens’ names will surface during this inquiry and therefore Gambians must prepare to deal with the magnitude of neglect and massive corruption that was across the board in the Jammeh government.

The question that many people will struggle with is how citizens who knowingly, willfully and deliberately aided Jammeh every step of the way will be held to account as well. For example, people like Momodou Sabally, Njogu Bah and many others knowing fully well that it was beyond their mandate to deal with any cash transactions or even becoming signatories to bank accounts. It is false for anybody to insinuate that at anytime they were forced to take up a position of responsibility or forced to sign any documents that violated the law of the land. These people willfully, deliberately and happily took up these responsibilities and had personally benefited from these massive corruption with Jammeh and his government. Many will be interested to know what would happen to these citizens who clearly violated their oath of office and participated in open day corruption in the Gambia. Gainako will follow the proceedings closely and will bring reports to our readership. Fasten your seat belt as we go through these mind numbing corruption activities in the Gambia.

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