Wednesday, April 17, 2013

For ‘concealing treason’ Alieu Lowe gets 20 years imprisonment

Colonel Ndure Cham (photo source: Unknown)
The High Court in Banjul on April 16, 2013 convicted and sentenced Alieu Jobe to 20 years imprisonment for “concealment of treason and perjury”.

His co-accused Abdoulie Njie was acquitted and discharged on the same charges.

The duo were arrested, detained and later charged in relation to the 2006 foiled coup plot led by Colonel Ndure Cham, a runaway former Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) of The Gambia Armed Forces.

They had, during the trial, denied the charges brought against them by the State. They were charged with three counts, two counts of concealment of treason against both accused persons and one count of perjury against the Lowe, the 2nd accused.

The prosecution called three witnesses and tendered four exhibits to support its case and the accused persons each gave a lone evidence, and tendered no exhibit.

On Tuesday, Justice Emmanuel Nkea of the Special Criminal Court, presiding, found Lowe, a former accountant general, guilty of the charges pressed against him. He said Lowe's  sentence commences from March 2006 when he was first taken into custody.

He however, acquitted and discharged the first accused Abdoulie Njie on “lack of evidence”.

In March 2006, The Gambia Government reported that it has aborted an attempted coup allegedly masterminded by Colonel Ndure Cham. Some civilians and army officers were arrested, investigated, and tried for their involvement in the treason plot.

While some were convicted and sentenced accordingly, others were discharged and acquitted. Yet, others like Lowe and Njie who were also arrested and investigated were not tried.

Mr Lowe was convicted following allegations that he failed to inform a Minister, a Magistrate, a Police Officer or a Member of the Armed Forces, of the plan to overthrow the democratic elected government of The Gambia.

Written by Modou S. Joof

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