Interior Minister Yankuba Sonko convened a meeting few days ago with the leadership of the anti narcotic unit and the police to express the need for the nominated MP Yakumba Jaiteh to be charged for assaulting a law enforcement officer, Freedom Newspaper can reveal. The assaulted drug squad officer Ebrima Fadera and the other arresting officers were also in attendance at the meeting. This followed the drug squad’s Directorates’ failure to press charges against MP Jaiteh when the incident happened.
MP Jaiteh was subsequently charged after the Interior Ministry meeting. She and her Dad Yusupha Jaiteh were charged with assault and obstruction. A court in Kanifing granted the duo bail on Monday.
According to sources, the following security officers attended the Interior Ministry meeting:
Bakary Gassama, DG Drug Squad
Deputy IGP Abdoulie Sanyang
The officers were informed at the meeting that MP Jaiteh had committed a crime against the state by assaulting the anti narcotic officers. The Minister, who was a former police chief, then recommended for charges to be filed against MP Jaiteh.
According to sources, the drug squad officers had earlier filed a complaint with the Serre-Kunda police station, stating that they were assaulted by unknown mob. Their complaint was recorded in the station diary. Two days later, the officers decided to withdraw their complaint case.
It has been alleged that the complaining officers were manipulated by their superiors—notably DG Bakary Gassama, a UDP appointee to withdraw the complaint that they filed with the Serre-Kunda police station.
The Interior Minister then summoned a meeting at his office to discuss the MP’s case with the police and drug squad’s command. At the meeting, it was agreed that both Yakumba Jaiteh and her Daddy Yusupha Jaiteh should be charged.
“This case is weak. It has been messed up by the Drug Squad command. Could you imagine that about five to six different statements were obtained from the arresting officers? Each time that statements are obtained from them, the command would recommend for the statements to be rewritten. They kept contradicting each other. Some of the officers are not willing to testify against MP Jaiteh. They will go to court to contradict each other. Without the intervention of the Interior Minister Yankuba Sonko, this case wouldn’t have gone to court. It was Sonko, who summoned them in his office to tell them that this matter should be prosecuted,” said our source.
Both MP Jaiteh and her Daddy have denied the police charges. They have been rescheduled to reappear in court on October 26th.