By Own Correspondent – Seventeen men believed to be rebels from the Senegalese southern region of Casamance yesterday appeared at the special criminal court in Banjul presided over by Justice Ikpala.
The accused persons include Yusupha Ceesay and Modou Lamin Badjie, who both pleaded guilty to the charge since their first appearance at the lower court, while Saku Jammeh, Zackaria Jatta, Tijan Camara, Mafuji Jarju, Abdoulie Sonko, Hatab Jatta, Abdou Badjie, Ebrima Jarju, Sang Sambou, Basiru Jammeh, Seedy Sanyang, Tumani Manga, Alasana Jarju and Aziz Kujabi, all denied the charge.
The accused persons are expected to answer to a two-count indictment for unlawful possession of firearms in the Republic of the Gambia and for illegal entry into The Gambia.
When the case was called, state counsel Nyameh Bah, who announced her representation for state, told the court that a letter from the Ministry of Justice had been written to the court seeking for an adjournment of the case, as the prosecutor handling the case had another engagement at the Supreme Court.
Subsequently the trial was adjourned till 24th November 2010. The 17 accused persons, believed to be armed men from the southern Senegalese region of Casamance, were previously arraigned at the Banjul Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday, 13th October 2010, charged with one count of being in possession of an assortment of arms of war and ammunitions without authority.