Ebou Jallow, Edward Singhateh and Yankuba Touray, all former members of the Armed Forces Provisional Ruling Council (AFPRC) have been asked by the Gambian government to return stolen monies belonging to the state in the sum of thirty-two million, two hundred and twenty thousand dollars ($32, 220, 000).
The trio have also been banned from holding public offices in the country, as well as declared unfit to manage or run any state enterprises for the rest of their lives.
This latest development came on the heels of the submission of the report of the Commission of Inquiry, set up by the government of President Adama Barrow in 2017. The Commission was tasked with looking into the financial activities and dealings of ex-president, Yahya Jammeh, who is alleged to have embezzled over one billion dalasis within his 22-year reign.
Ebou Jallow, former spokesperson of the AFPRC, Edward Singhateh, former Defense Minister, and Yankuba Touray, former Minister of Local Government were found culpable by the Commission of Inquiry, otherwise known as the Janneh Commission, for failing to account for a $32, 220, 000 loan from Taiwan and thus liable for the amounts unaccounted for.
They have also been indicted by the Commission for obtaining a $35m loan from Taiwan on behalf of the Gambian government out of which only $2.3m was deposited at the Central Bank of The Gambia, while $2.7m was claimed to have been handed over to Yahya Jammeh, then Chairman of the Military Junta.
“Mr. Ebou Jallow, Mr. Edward Singhateh and Mr. Yankuba Touray are hereby ordered to pay back to the state the sum of $32, 220, 000 within 30 days from the publication of this White Paper failing which their properties will be forfeited to the state and sold. The proceeds of sale shall be applied to the payment of monies for which they are found to be liable in the report, in addition to criminal proceedings to be instituted against them,” government White Paper submitted.
Government also disclosed in the White Paper that Mr. Ebou Jallow, Mr. Edward Singhateh and Mr. Yankuba Touray are no longer fit to hold public offices for eternity, as well as banned from holding any directorship position in any state enterprise in The Gambia for fifteen (15) years effective 13th September, 2019.
The report added, “Consequently, the government has decided that they (Mr. Ebou Jallow, Mr. Edward Singhateh and Mr. Yankuba Touray) are not fit to hold public office and should be banned, and Mr. Ebou Jallow, Mr. Edward Singhateh and Mr. Yankuba Touray are hereby banned from holding public office for the remainder of their lives. They are also banned from holding any director positions in any state owned enterprises in The Gambia for fifteen (15) years from the date of publication of this White Paper”.
The Gambian government also accepted to take legal action against the former President Yahya Jammeh for economic crimes, corruption and theft as well as banning him from holding public office for the rest of his life.