A Gunjur man living in the United Kingdom Omar Jatta has accused the African Properties Chief Executive Officer Adi Jobe of allegedly selling a land to him without giving him his land lease papers, Freedom Newspaper can report. The land in question is located at Brufut Ghana town. Jatta said he bought the land from Jobe for D450,000 dalasis. It has been over seven months since he bought the land from Jobe and he hasn’t been issued any valid lease papers.
A frustrated Jatta told Freedom radio’s Sunday Leral show that despite repeated demands for Jobe to fulfill his side of the mortgage contractual agreement he reached with him, but to no avail. He said he has paid off his land, but Jobe wouldn’t issue him any lease papers.
According to Jatta, Jobe, has been allegedly lying to him for months, promising to give him lease papers, but hasn’t done so. He recalled having a quarrel with Jobe during one of his recent visits to The Gambia in January of 2021, in which he said Jobe, allegedly lured him to meet him (Jobe) at his Brusubi turntable office. He said he was told by Jobe that if he (Jatta) was a man, he should meet him at his office around 1:00 o’clock in the morning Gambian time.
Jatta left his Gunjur home, against the advice of his mother, and was arrested by armed anti-crime officers upon arrival at the African Properties office. He was booked for hours at the anti-crime Bijilo office before he was granted bail. He was accused of communicating threats to the African Properties CEO Adi Jobe and Jobe’s second wife Asatou Cham. Astou is Jobe’s Secretary.
Mr. Jatta alleged that Mr. Jobe was able to use the anti-crime unit Commander Momodou Sowe to arrest him without an arrest warrant.
“I was told by commander Sowe that my arrest was occasioned following a complaint he received from Adi Jobe that I went to his office with scissors. That was a blatant lie. I was never armed. It is sad that the police are being used to meddle into land dispute cases,” Jatta remarked.
Jatta said he was never charged by the police. He felt that his rights have been violated saying that “the police work for us and they should not allow dubious land dealers to use them to clampdown on innocent victims of land scammers. This was not what we fought for to effect political change in The Gambia. The Gambian government should criminalize illegal land sale.”
According to Jatta, he was allegedly insulted by Mr. Jobe’s wife Asatou Jobe during his attempts to recover his money from the company.
“Adi’s wife Asatou Cham insulted my mom during a heated argument I had with her on the phone. She calls me a mother fu…… repeatedly. I lost my temper and told her that I was going to deal with her when I come to The Gambia,” he said.
Jatta visited The Gambia in January, but he said, he never touched Mrs. Cham. What followed later was that he was accused of entering the African Properties office with scissors. An allegation he denied.
In a Facebook write up Jatta alleged: “I have been scammed by an estate company called African Properties, which is at Brusubi turntable. Am warning everyone to stay away from these group of scammers, especially Gambians abroad. I have paid them D450,000 dalasis and they owe my sister’s husband and my two cousins’ large amount of money and they been lying to me for over seven months. Stories upon stories and they even blocked on their phones because they ran out of stories, I guess.”
Jatta claimed that after his Facebook posting, he was contacted by the African Properties. He further claimed that the company has promised to sort him out, but he was yet to receive his land papers or money.
Jatta said he later realized that Jobe hasn’t allegedly paid the Alkalo of Brufut for the land that he (Jobe) had bought from Alkalo Molamin Manneh. Hence, he said, Jobe couldn’t secure the necessary land papers from the Alkalo.
Jatta had to leave The Gambia without getting his land papers or money back. He had given a power of attorney to his sister Jainaba Jatta to represent him in his absence.
“I am calling on the government to look into the issue of land dispute in this country. It is getting out of hand. Someone not thinking right might one day cause harm if it is not addressed. People are getting killed because of land issues. Illegal land sale should be criminalized,” he said.
Adi Jobe could not be reached for comment on Sunday. His phone was not reachable. But we were able to speak to one of his staffers Naffie Senghore. Ms. Senghore has confirmed that Omar Jatta had indeed bought a land from their company. He asked us to call Mr. Jobe on Monday, because she said, she was not in the position to speak on behalf of the company.
“I am not supposed to speak on behalf of the company. You should call Mr. Jobe. Jatta’s sister has been scheduled to meet with Mr. Jobe on Monday. That’s all I can tell you,” she said.
The Brufut Alkalo Molamin Manneh was reluctant to speak to us when we asked him to shed light on Omar Jatta’s land dispute case with Adi Jobe.
“My dealing with Adi Jobe is nobody’s business. I am not going to disclose my dealings with Adi to anybody. If they have issues with Adi, let them to speak to Adi, that is not my business,” Manneh said.
“I spoke to Omar’s sister. She has called me complaining. They should speak to Adi and not me,” he said.
When asked whether his alleged refusal to issue land papers to Adi Jobe, got to do with Jobe’s alleged failure to settle the money he allegedly owed him, Manneh was quick to say: “My dealing with Adi is no one’s business. I am not going to avail myself to the press. I don’t want to be in the press.” He later hung up the phone.
Jatta has furnished us with receipts of the monies that he paid to African Properties. He said he had worked so hard to raise that money. He is demanding for his money or land lease papers.