By: Mafugi Ceesay
Justice Momodou Jallow of the Bunding High Court presiding over the alleged rape case of businessman Bubacarr Keita alias Bob Keita has ordered a blood sample of Fatou Ngoneh Mbaye, Prosecution witness, 8 (PW8) and supposed victim in the ongoing trial, to be taken for DNA test.
At the last sitting, the court adjourned the case and ordered the DNA of the accused person Bob Keita and the boyfriend of the eighth prosecution, Pa Modou Jum to be taken.
In Monday’s trial, State Counsel A. Jobe informed the court that the blood samples of both Keita and Jum were already taken at the Edward Francis Small Teaching Hospital in Banjul.
Defense Counsel Lawyer Camara objected to the application, saying it has no basis in law, even though the court had ordered for blood samples of Bubacarr Keita, Muhammed, and Pa Modou Jum to be taken for DNA by test.
The defense lawyer further argued that the court needs to provide the accused person with a copy of the ruling. ‘Therefore, it cannot grant the application today, which can only be confirmed or done if the ruling is served on the accused person.’
He told the court that the State application seeks to foster the submission that DNA had been collected on Muhammad before he passed away on 8th July 2022.
Adding that: ‘ this submission is worrying and disturbing because it can only mean that the blood sample was allegedly extracted from a child in Coma and the blood sample were collected before the court order’.
He said the samples were also taken from the child, not in the presence of an interested person, counsel, and the accused person. It is unacceptable to the accused person because it’s against all principles of fair hearing and transparency.
According to him, if the blood extraction from the child is to be subjected to DNA examination, it must be done in a manner that inspires confidence and transparency and does not close doors.
The defense lawyer continued to stress that compliance with the order of the court means extracting blood samples from the three parties, Pa Modou Jum, Muhammed, the child, and Boubacar Keita, after the ruling or after it was ordered and in the presence of all interested parties for assurance of the show.
State Counsel A Jobe informed the court that the State needs time to reply on the stay of proceeding and the DNA sample.
Delivering the ruling, Justice Jallow said the State might indulge and get the blood samples of PW 8 Fatou Ngoneh Mbaye, mother of late Muhammed, saying when any person is subjected to DNA blood samples and any other biological sample, Muhammed could be used to establish the DNA paternity in the case.
Justice Jallow pointed out that the State requested to draw an alternative DNA sample which the defense objected to is also granted for the State authority to assist the court in ascertaining the paternity of Muhammed and to collect any evidence to verify the truth of the case.
The case continues on 21st July at 2:30pm.