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HomeGambia NewsGAMBIA: BANTA KEITA'S ACCOUNT WAS OPENED IN ABSENTIA, ACCORDING TO WITNESS

GAMBIA: BANTA KEITA’S ACCOUNT WAS OPENED IN ABSENTIA, ACCORDING TO WITNESS

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In 2016, when Banta Keita was away, Lawyer Sheriff Tambadou urged a former branch manager of Zenith Bank in Serekunda to create a bank account for his client. The former manager testified before a high court on this matter.

Aminata Bah was giving evidence as the tenth prosecution witness in front of Judge ZN Mboob at the Mile 7 High Court in the criminal trial of Sheriff Njie and Banta Keita, which is now underway.

The witness said, “In January 2016, I received a call from uncle, Lawyer Sheriff Tambadou, to open an account for Banta. I took a form to his office in Banjul and I left it there,” in response to State Counsel Muhammad B. Sowe’s question on when Banta Keita opened an account. He phoned me later to come pick up the paperwork. while I questioned him whether Banta Keita was there while I was at his office, he responded in the positive. I told him I wanted to meet him after that, and he said it would not be a problem.

She went on, “He provided me all the necessary paperwork, including an ID card, TIN certificate, two passport-sized pictures, and a reference. Lawyer Sheriff Tambadou also signed the form. He advised me to create an account as there is where the money would be fixed. They opened the account. Thus, the deposits were made in our Banjul branch thereafter. The first deposit was D2.4 million, followed by D1.3 million, D2.3 million, D420,000, and D50,000 as the last deposit. These occurred on January 8, 11, 12, and 15 of 2016.

The total deposits for the year, according to Ms. Bah, were D6.5 million.

She said the court, “[Later on] we received an instruction from Uncle Sheriff to move the money from Banta’s account to his account.”

Attorney MB Sowe went on to question her on her knowledge of Banta. Having never met him, the witness gave a negative response.

The attorney went on to inform her that opening an account for someone requires a banker to visit them in person, per Central Bank of The Gambia regulations.

In agreement, Ms. Bah said before the court, “Yes, you have to see the person. That’s why I went to Uncle Sheriff. I trusted him because he’s a lawyer and he told me that Banta was his client.”
The case has been postponed until December 20 and 21 in order to allow for further testimony.

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