By Halimatou Ceesay
The 16th Prosecution witness Ebrima Jabang in the murder trial of UDP Solo Sandeng involving agents of the defunct NIA Today 28th May, 2018 told Justice Kumba Sillah Camara of the Banjul High Court that the detainees including him were in good condition before arriving the NIA Headquarters.
When the case was called the lead Counsel Antouman Gaye asked the witness “When you were arrested and taken to the Police Intervention Unit (PIU) up to the time you were put on the Pickup to NIA in Banjul, what was the physical condition of Solo Sandeng, Nogoi Njie, Modou Ngum, Kafu Bayo, and you.”
In respond, the witness said at the time, Solo Sandeng, Nogoi Njie, Modou Ngum and him were physically well and very active. He said he was arrested together with Nogoi Njie whilst they were sitting under a mango tree. He said he knows Modou Ngum very well before the arrest and there was nothing wrong with him, adding that Kafu Bayo is his age mate, and at the time of the arrest he (Kafu) was also well and there was nothing wrong with him.
Clothes were given to him to look at and he confirmed that those were the very clothes given to him by the doctor, whom he (the witness) said knows his name from the media as Lamin Sayang. He identifies it as a trouser and Kaftan (gown), which were then tendered in court and marked in evidence as exhibit without any objection from the defence.
The witness then with permission of the court came down from the dock and identified Lamin Sanyang to the court by pointing at him.
Witness recalls being taken to mile 2 prison for almost two months, without receiving any medical treatment.
After examination-in-chief of the witness, the defence counsel for 1st accused Chimeh, P Gomez for the 2nd accused, I. Jallow for 3rd, U. Achigue for 6th and D. Dago for 9th accused said they have no questions to cross examine the witness.
S. Fatty counsel for the 4th, 5th, 7th and 8th accused persons said he has questions for the witness. “Are you a doctor?” Asked counsel Fatty.
“I am not,” witness said.
“Did you examine the body of your fellow detainees?” Counsel asked.
“No,” he replied.
“How many of you were put in the Bambadinka Cell?” Counsel asked.
“We were five in number minus two people (Solo and Nogoi),” witness said.
“Who would you blame for your arrest and detention? Is it Government or other people?” counsel asked.
“The authorities, those who are concern of our arrest,” witness said.
“By that, do you mean the Government?” Counsel asked.
“Yes, it was the then Government,” witness said.