Court frees former transport minister, envoy to France

Court frees former transport minister, envoy to France

A judge in The Gambia’s capital, Banjul has ruled in favor of the West African nation’s former Ambassador to France, Ousman Badjie.

Badjie was held liable by Gambian authorities for costing the small nation at least €61,000 after a financial attaché at the mission, Faisal Bojang diverted the funds for his personal use. Badjie, who was arrested after being recalled to serve in the cabinet was charged with negligence and economic crimes.

“I am of the view that the prosecution did not prove the case as required by the law. I see it as holding the accused liable for the offence committed by his subordinate. The accused is not found guilty of the five counts and he is accordingly acquitted and discharged.” Justice E.O. Dada

The former diplomat is not completely free after state prosecutor, A.M. Yusuf said he would be appealing against Justice Dada’s ruling. Dada however exercised discretion and released Mr. Badjie on a GMD10 million (US$250,000) bail.

In June last year, President Yahya Jammeh relegated the Paris mission to a consulate after IMF recommended it close some its embassies.

Former financial attaché Bojang has since been at large, but was named in a different corruption case at The Gambian Embassy in Guinea Bissau. Bojang has been accused of forging signatures and documents of the Gambian mission in France and Bissau to divert funds into his personal account.

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