The Attorney General and minister of Justice Mr. Ba Tambedu has unveiled at a press conference in Banjul that a court order is given for the freezing of assets purportedly belonging to former president Jammeh. According to minister Tambedou the freezing order affects the known properties held in the personal name of the former president or directly associated with him which includes 131 landed properties, 88 different bank accounts, 14 companies and number of livestock. The minister also urged anyone who has knowledge about properties of the former president to make it known to the authorities. When asked by Journalist Sainey M.K Mareneh on whether the court order covers both properties in and out of the Gambia the minister responded in the negative by buttressing that the order is not interterritorial but only for properties within the jurisdiction of the Gambia. The former president of the Gambia has ruled the country like his personal property with no accountability or whatsoever. His involvement in all kinds of business is an open secret from sand mining to selling school uniforms and bread and many other businesses. Soldiers who were paid by the taxpayers’ were the ones managing his numerous farms across the country.
Many people have hailed the decision to freeze Jammeh’s assets but others queried that freezing of assets should not be limited to only the former president but should be extended to his former close aides and business partners as well. Mr. Tambedou hinted on plans to set up a commission that would properly look into the assets of the former president and to recover every butut that was lost by the country as a result of actions of the former president or his close aides. The minister also unveiled the appointment of a public prosecutor lawyer Antuman Gaye to the NIA 9 case who are being tried at the high court in Banjul for the murder of Solo Sandeng and others. Mr. Tambedou lamented on the lack of capacity being the reason behind the slow pace at which his ministry is moving in addressing the issues at hand but he however indicated that help in building up capacity is gradually coming from within and outside the country.
Written by L.Nyassi, Oslo