Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Former Gambia’s Finance Minister Denied Bail For The Third Time On Monday

Calm down we will get out of this, Mambury Njie tells weeping relatives

Mambury Njie, Gambia’s former Minister of Financeand Economic Affairs, was again denied bail by the High Court in Banjul on Monday, Jan., 21, 2013.


Saleh Hadi Barkun, prosecuting, hinted that Mr Njie, who is previously charged with “abuse of office” and “economic crimes” at a lower court, is likely to face more charges. 
The prosecution has also argued the accused be held citing fears he could interfere with witnesses or ongoing investigations if granted bail.
Justice Mikailu Abdullahi, presiding, ruled that the accused person, who is yet to enter a formal trial at the High Court, be remanded.
This is the third time Mr Njie is refused a courtbail. His lawyer has previously argued his detention is illegal. 
The former minister has now been in custody for 37 days without any formal charges or court order, but his counsel Lamin S. Camara described the ex-minister’s ordeal as “unconstitutional.” 
“I could have mind to release the applicant on bail today, but looking at the antecedent and the fact that more charges are likely to be brought against him, I cannot grant him bail,” Judge Mikailu ruled on Monday. 
However, he warned that if prosecution failed to bring formal charges against the accused within 10 days he will grant the accused bail either conditionally or unconditionally. 
Mr Mambury Njie, who has been in detention at Mile 2, the State’s Central Prison since Dec. 14, 2012, is yet to take his plea.
His case was transferred to the High Court after the Banjul Magistrates Court ruled it lacks jurisdiction to hear economic crimes. 
The case is scheduled to resume on Feb., 1, 2013.

Written by Modou S. Joof

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