11 November 2013

Gambia: Defence Files 'No Case' Submission in Editor Jobe and Co Case

Sarjo Camara Singateh Ebrima Jah, the counsel defending Alhagie Jobe, the Deputy Editor in Chief of the Daily Observer Newspaper, has recently filed a 'no case to answer' submission on behalf of his client who is facing multiple charges of seditious intention alongside Mbye Bettaye, before Justice Emmanuel Nkea, of the Special Criminal Division of the High Court. The Defence Counsel in his submission submitted that they rely on section 288 of the CPC, noting that at the closure of the prosecution's case, the prosecution has failed to prove a prima Facie Case against the 1st accused (Jobe). He pointed out that count 6, which is negligence and reckless driving; none of the witnesses were present except the second prosecution witness (PW2), who did not say anything to support the element of that offence. He said during cross examination, PW2 admitted that the 1st accused was driving normally and not over speeding. He argued that the prosecution failed to call the arresting officers and further cited a section in the Evidence Act to support his argument. He referred the court to count 3 which is 'Giving False Information to a Public Servant', he argued that all the four witnesses called by the prosecution, none of them gave evidence in support of that count.

Therefore he said, there is no evidence before this court that the 1staccused gave false information. He further referred the court to count 1, 2and 3, which he said are all related, and submitted that the evidence given by the witnesses, on these counts are all discredited under cross examination, more especially the investigating officer, who said they did not investigate the author of the document. He added that they also failed to bring witness from Daily Observer Newspaper, noting that their investigation was inadequate and that this court cannot rely on it.

He said as Deputy Editor In Chief, he can receive unlawful article from reporters, and its also clear that the alleged article dated 19 December 2012, was never published until the time of his arrest. He finally submitted that on all the counts, vital witnesses were not called, adding that Pa Malick Faye, the former MD and Ousainou Dumbuya, are all on the run; adding that the prosecution has failed to prove all the counts and urged the court to acquit and discharge the 1st accused, Editor Jobe. The case continues on 12th November 2013.

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