By Halimatou Ceesay
Representing Yankuba Badjie former NIA director and first accused person in the murder trial of late Solo Sandeng and Cos, Lawyer C.E. Mene has challenged prosecution witness 10 Pa Sering Mboob earlier today before Justice Kumba Sillah Camara of Banjul High Court.
In his cross examination, Mene asked prosecution witness the exact year he joined the NIA ‘you said you joined the NIA in July 2015, is correct, is it not that you were with the NIA less than a year before April, 2016”? Yes, replied Mr Mboob.
“Where you serving with any agency or Government before NIA?” Asked Mene.
Prosecutor witness Mboob replied positively. What agency or Government were you serving with?” he asked.
“When did you cease to serve with the Police?” he asked. “In 2000,” replied Mboob.
“What was the last agency or Government you served with before joining the NIA?” asked Mene.
“Drug Squad,” he answered.
“Was Drug Squad the same with the NDEA?” Asked Mene.
Mboob replied that “I served with drug squad”.
“Now you know the NDEA?” Mene asked.
“I know the drug squad,” answered Mboob.
“The Drug Squad is under which agency?” he asked.
“The drug squad is under NDEA,” he answered.
‘Why did you leave the NDEA?” he asked.
“I left the NDEA because I was not happy with the way I was treated there,” he said.
“I put it to you that you left NDEA for misconduct,” Mene said.
“I was never dismissed in connection with the case,” he said.
“In Fact you were dismissed in connection with a drug case,” Mene said. No, replied the witness.
“You said in your evidence-in-chief that you heard Nogoi Njie saying in Mandinka “give me time to tie my wrapper,” did you see any wrapper that she wanted to tie?” counsel asked.
“Is it possible for Nogoi to ask for a time to tie her wrapper, if there is no wrapper?” counsel asked.
“What I know was that Nogoi Njie was saying that let her be given permission to tie her wrapper,” said Mboob.
“Is it correct that you cannot categorically say that there was a wrapper?” Mene asked.
“What I said was the time I saw her (Nogoi) there was no wrapper,” replied Mboob.
“Female dressing in the Gambia, does it consist of only wrapper?” counsel asked.
“No,” witness replied.
“I putting it to you that on the day of the interview when you saw Nogoi Njie she had underwear and a top on,” counsel said.
“I don’t know,” replied the witness.
Lawyer Mene further asked whether the black object that Tamba Mansary allegedly took from his back was attached to his back. “I don’t know,” said witness Mboob.
“You said Tamba tried to hit Nogoi and in the process he fell down, after he fell down what happened to the black object from his back?” counsel asked.
In his respond Mboob said “Tamba fell down when he tried to kick Nogoi Njie”.
“Is it permissible for the NIA agents at the NIA to beat suspects with black objects?” counsel asked. No replied the witness.
At that juncture the defence counsel for 3rd accused counsel I. Jallow rose up and told the court that the accused person has brought it to the court’s attention that there is a witness called Mbemba Camara sitting in court. The witness was then identified and the prosecution confirmed that he is one of the listed witnesses and he was then cautioned by the trial judge and asked to leave the court which he did.
Still on cross examination, Mene asked “you will agree with me that if Tamba did what you alleged him of that will be a violation to the NIA?”
Mboob replied that they (the NIAs) were not allowed to beat.
Counsel Mene repeated “If what you have alleged against Tamba happens to be true, that would be wrong”.
“I do not allege, it is what I saw,” he said.
“After witnessing the scene you ran to the interview hall, what did you do?” counsel asked.
“I went in and sat down there,” he said.
“Was it necessary for you to run if it was few meters from the veranda to the interview hall?” counsel asked.
“I ran because I saw a naked woman,” he said.
“At the NIA from that time up till now, is there any black object that NIA agents carry around on your back?” counsel asked. Mboob replied negatively.
“The black object that you talked about, have you seen that object before at the NIA?” Counsel asked. “No,” said Mboob.