The DNA expert Superintendent Edward Kofi Abban of Ghana will arrive in The Gambia, on Monday, 10th of October 2022 to testify in the ongoing alleged rape case involving Bubacarr Keita commonly known as (Bob Keita), Principal State Counsel P. Gomez told the High Court in Banjul on Wednesday, October 5,2022
Justice Momodou S.M. Jallow ruled that the Ghanaian who conducted the DNA examination would testify on the DNA findings and would unseal it in the court. The court would serve the defence and give them reasonable time.
He added that the court demands that an adjournment date next week is taken for the DNA result to be received and open in court as were sealed in Ghana in the presence of the expert Kofi Abban, whose testimony will be used to unseal the DNA result.
He further ruled Tuesday 11 October 2022 to be set for the DNA result to be disclosed in the presence of the expert from Ghana, noting unless either party objects.
In his testimony, ASP Francis Jatta, a police officer attached to the Criminal Record Office of The Gambia Police Force, told the court that his office received a correspondent from the Ministry of Justice through the office of the IGP requesting assistance in terms of DNA sample collection in the case of the State V.S. Bob Keita.
“I was tasked as the forensic officer to witness the sample collection that has the court order stating that the sample should be all the parties involved,” he told the court.
He told the court that the documents indicated that the sample should be collected from the toddler Baby Muhammed, FatouNgonnehMbye who is the victim, Bubacarr Keita, and Pa ModouNjo.
” He recalled that on the 12th of August he went to the Edward Francis Small Teaching Hospital in Banjul to witness the sample collection from all the parties, revealing that upon arrival, he was asked to go to professor Ogun and he was led to him by Senior State Counsel AlassanJobe.
“I was with professor Ogun, the victim Fatou Ngonneh Mbye, the victim’s mother Kumba Krubally, the victim’s brother Muhammed Mbye and the High Court Registrar. We waited for Bubacarr Keita and Pa Modou Njom. However, after a while, we received a notice that Bob was brought in by the prison officers but he stopped outside the hospital around the mortuary. Bob said he would not enter inside professor Ogun’s office because his defense had written an appeal to the Appeal Court of The Gambia and didn’t want to jeopardise that.”
PW 9 Jatta, told the court that Pa ModouNjom didn’t come on that day. “In the end, we proceeded with the two and took blood samples from the victim FatouNgonnehMbye. The blood samples were taken by professor Ogun and it was later air-dried and packaged. I also learned that a blood sample was taken from Bob Keita but the police were not present,” he told the crowded court.
He added: “We later proceeded to the mortuary and a corpse of baby Muhammed was brought in the presence of Senior counsel AlassanJobe, High Court registrar, Muhammed Mbye the victim’s elder brother, professor Ogun and one BubaJallow, the mortuary attendant. DNA samples were collected and his two toenails were removed. It was also air-dry and sealed.”
“The two blood samples were given to me together with the blood samples of Bob Keita and Pa ModouNgonneh which were collected before. From there we put them in a container with an ice bag and then I proceeded to the airport. Upon arrival in Ghana, I was received at the airport by the Ghana Forensic Police officer. The blood samples were handed to one Supt. Edward Kofi Abban for the necessary DNA analysis and all other things. After handing it over, I waited until 15 September for the report. I got the sealed report on 15 September and on 16 September, I returned to the country.
The case was adjourned to the 11th of October for the PW9 to continue his testimony and be cross-examined by the defence team.