Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Yanks Denies Giving Command to Guards in his Residence on the day Koro died

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By Nelson Manneh

Retired Captain Yankuba Today 31st August told the Banjul High Court that he did not give any command to the guards in his compound on the day Koro Ceesay died.

The former military officer turned politician is accused of the murder of former Minister of Finance, Ousman Koro Ceesay under the AFPRC reign. The prosecution alleged that Touray used a pestle-like weapon to murder Ceesay in June 1995 at his (Touray’s) residence. Touray denied any wrongdoing as he pleaded his constitutional immunity, but the court entered a plea of not guilty for him.

Here is the verbatim testimony of Yankuba Touray before Justice Ebrima Jaiteh of the Banjul High Court on Monday. He began his testimony on Tuesday and this is the third day of his testimony. He was led by his lawyer Abdoulie Sisoho.

Question: “Mr. Touray can you tell the court what happened after you spoke to Jali Musa Sowe?”

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Answer: “I went to bed.”

Question: “As a Minister and a member of the Council at the time were you entitled to guards?”

Answer: “Yes.”

Question: “Who was responsible for posting the guards?”

Answer: “Officers from the First Infantry Battalion.”

Question: “What do you mean by the first Infantry Battalion?”

Answer: “First Infantry Battalion was the only Battalion stationed at the Yundum Military Barracks.”

Question: “Are the guard’s Civilians?”

Answer: “No.”

Question: “When the guards are in your compound, were they under command?”

Answer: “Yes.”

Question: “From whose Command?”

Answer: “They are under the command of the Officers of the first Infantry Battalion.”

Question: “You as a Minister or Council Member at the time, can you deploy those guards who are not under your command?”

Answer: “No.”

Question: “Can you use them for another duty apart from guarding your compound?”

Answer: “No.”

Question: “As a Minister at the time if you wanted to deploy your guards, what were you supposed to do?”

Answer: “I have to talk to the Battalion Commander.”

Question: “Can a soldier leave his position without any command?”

Answer: “No.”

Question: “When you came from the State House to your house in Kerr Serign, the soldiers who were mounting your guard post do you know them?”

Answer; “Yes.”

Question: “Do you have any professional relationship with any of the guards at that moment in time?”

Answer: “No.”

Question; “If something goes wrong or something happened, who should the guards reported to?”

Answer; “The guard commander will report it to the Sergeant who then reports to the Platoon Commander.”

Question: “Did the guards have any form of material for communication?”

Answer: “The guards have a logbook and every activity carried out by the guards is logged in the logbook and they have another book called the visitors book, and anybody going in and out of my compound is booked in that book.”

Question: “Do you post any of your guards anywhere at that night?”

Answer: “No.”

Question: “Were you aware of any threat on the night Jammeh was laving?”

Answer: “No.”

Question: “Tell us what happened on that Saturday?”

Answer: “I woke up in the morning and drove my car to Banjul for our usual Saturday football matches. After the football matches, I picked some of my childhood friends and drove back to Kerr Serign for our usual ‘Superkanja’.”

The matter was adjourned to October 5th 2020 at 12 noon for continuation of hearing.

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