Former petroleum minister, others released on bail

Former Minister of Petroleum Sira Wally Ndow, Petroleum Director Momodou Badjie and former Cabinet Secretary Nuha Touray were granted bail at GMD1 million (US$25,000) after several attempts were denied by the courts.

The trio were indicted on graft charges for causing economic loss to The Gambia and giving false information to an official, court documents say.

According to a criminal complaint, the senior government officials signed a multi-million dollar contract with an oil company in the Middle East, which the country’s President Yahya Jammeh said is nonexistent.

Petroleum-Scandal--1132x670 - Sira Wally Ndow, Nuha Touray

Jammeh’s administration said the deal caused the country to lose at least US$12 million. A search of the company, March Petroleum, saw the company was legitimate.

They were arrested with six other senior government officials, including a former permanent secretary Muntaga Sallah.

The Gambia’s government has been accused of corrupt practices and a bill has been validated by the country’s Attorney General Mama Fatima Singhateh to establish an anti-graft commission.

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