Court Martial Frees Brigadier Generals Umpa Mendy and Ansumana Tamba
A court martial at Yundum Barracks has found Brigadier Generals Umpa Mendy and Ansumana Tamba not guilty of desertion.
The two generals were charged with desertion contrary to Gambia Armed Forces Act after they allegedly abandoned official duties for one year without official authority when they accompanied the former president Yahya Jammeh to exile in Equatorial Guinea in January 2017.
They were arrested in 2018 after they returned to the country from Equatorial Guinea.
Mendy denied the charge and argued in his defense that his whereabouts were known to the Gambia Armed Forces command. Tamba also told the court that Saul Badgie, a former army commander instructed him to accompany the former president to exile.
Badgie also left with Jammeh and remains with him in exile.
“I take this as a will of God, and more willing today to serve my country,” Tamba told waiting reporters after the verdict.
The acquitted officers were hugged by their families outside the courtroom as they were driven away.
The sentence can be appealed.