In Central Bank D11M Bribery Scandal: Police release the investigation report, four recommended for prosecution

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Gambia's Central Bank Governor Buah Saidy

Sources have informed TAT that the Gambian police have finally produced a report on the alleged D11 million bribery of staff of the Central Bank of the Gambia (CBG), first reported by TAT on 16 February 2022.

A source within the CBG has confirmed to TAT the existence of the police’s final report.

According to information received in their report, the police are now saying that four Gambian nationals have been found wanting for involvement in the alleged crime.

“The case is now at the prosecution level for possible criminal prosecution. Four people, all not Central Bank staff, are found to be guilty of committing fraud. The findings of the police is that none of the mentioned Central Bank staff are connected to this fraud,” Police Public Relations Officer Binta Njie told TAT.

She added: “The suspects posed as Central Bank staff. Two suspects are Gambians, and one is said to be a Gambian Lebanese and the other a Gambian Senegalese.”

The police report came after a probe following the TAT story, which was based on information received and contained in a letter written by Solie Chambers to the management of the CBG.

The TAT story reported the claim made by a law firm’s client that D11 million in bribery money was given to the staff of the CBG.

The firm’s complainant further claimed that old, mutilated banknotes of D155 million were on 21 March 2021 deposited at the CBG in Banjul.

According to the law firm’s letter citing the claim made by its client, the alleged bribe to staff was to facilitate the replacement of the tattered banknotes with good banknotes fit for release and public circulation in the market.

At the time, TAT followed up, and our sources reported that the CBG management had launched an internal investigation, whereas the police also embarked on a probe.

Meanwhile, the CBG top management repeatedly denied the allegation, and the governor declared that he would resign if true.

Consequently, the CBG issued a report blaming the two senior officials for negligence, which subsequently saw the departure of the 1st and 2nd deputy governors.

The police, for their part, issued a preliminary report stating that the whole affair was the work of scammers, whom the police blamed.

According to the new information received in their report, the police are now saying that four Gambian nationals have been found wanting in the alleged crime.

“The case is now at the prosecution level for possible criminal prosecution. Four people, all not Central Bank staff, are found to be guilty of committing fraud. The findings of the police is that none of the mentioned Central Bank staff are connected to this fraud,” Police Public Relations Officer Binta Njie told TAT.

She added: “The suspects posed as Central Bank staff. Two suspects are Gambians, and one is said to be a Gambian Lebanese and the other a Gambian Senegalese.”

TAT will follow developments related to this affair and keep our readers updated.

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Sainey M.K. Marenah
Mr. Sainey M.K. Marenah is a Prominent Gambian journalist, founding editor The Alkamba Times and formerly head of communications at the Constitutional Review Commission (CRC) and Communications and PR Consultant for The Gambia Pilot Program, under Gamworks. Mr. Marenah served as the Social media Strategist and Editor at Gambia Radio and Television Services. He is also the Banjul Correspondent for Voice of America Radio. Sainey is a human rights and developmental journalist who has carved a strong niche particularly in new media environments in the Gambian media industry. Mr. Marenah began his career as a junior reporter with the Point Newspaper in the Gambia in 2008 and rose through the ranks to become Chief correspondent before moving to The Standard Newspaper also in Banjul as Editorial Assistant and head of News. He is a household name in the Gambia’s media industry having covered some of the most important stories in the former and current government. These include the high profile treason cases including the Trial of Former military chiefs in Banjul in 2009 to 2012. Following his arrest and imprisonment by the former regime of President, Yahya Jammeh in 2014, Marenah moved to Dakar Senegal where he continues to practice Journalism freelancing for various local and international Media organization’s including the BBC, Al-Jazeera, VOA, and ZDF TV in Germany among others. He is the co-Founder of the Banjul Based Media Center for Research and Development; an institution specialized in research and development undertakings. As a journalist and Communication Expert, focused on supporting the Gambia's transitional process, Mr Marenah continues to play a pivotal role in shaping a viable media and communications platform that engages necessary tools and action to increase civic participation and awareness of the needs of transitional governance to strengthen the current move towards democratization. Mr. Marenah has traveled extensively as a professional journalist in both Europe, Africa and United States and attended several local and international media trainings.

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