EYEAFRICA TV: Banjul, The Gambia: Commission of Inquiry report whose summary was released by Gambia government last Friday in which it placed a lien on the properties of fourteen people and institutions continued to be challenged by the implicated banks, with one of them announcing that it will be heading to the court to contest the decision.
The latest indicted institution to challenge the report is a subsidiary of a Nigerian-owned, Guaranty Trust Bank. It was indicted alongside a Gambian-owned Trust bank, MA Kharafi and Sons Company; a Kuwaiti owned agricultural investment company and eleven other individuals.
Guaranty Trust bank protested in a statement on Monday, in which it says as a believer in due process and the rule of law, it has been engaging and would continue to engage concerned authorities in government, the financial industry and the legal system to harmoniously redress the allegations leveled against it. “The bank views the Janneh Commission as a good exercise that was important for our development efforts. However, we consider its findings and indictment against our bank as erroneous,” it said in the statement.
Gambian-owned Trust bank also challenged the indictment placed on it in a statement on Saturday, saying the Commission of Inquiry report was more or less an allegation which it intend to challenge vigorously before a competent court. “It would therefore be unprofessional to comment on the matter at this time prior to a decision being made,” it said.
Government released the dossier at the justice ministry on Friday, which was prepared based on the recommendations of the President Adama Barrow’s instituted Commission of Inquiry that probed into former President Yahya Jammeh and his close associates and institutions in connection to their financial dealings.
GTBank assured its customers, partners and investors that all its branches are open for business and it would continue to conduct business as usual. “We assure our customers that the bank’s assets are not been frozen and they would not be affected in anyway. The bank remains strong and liquid to provide the unrivaled customer services we have been known for.”
In the indictment, the Commission says it found that some accounts were illegally opened at the bank, while unauthorised withdrawals were allowed in respect of other accounts and sometimes when a co-signatory was even out of the country.
“Our customers and partners are assured that GTBank will remain as a law abiding cooperate citizen and we would continue to play our part in national development efforts by being tax complaint and through our banquet of products and services that enhance business and tourism development,” the bank said.
It also guaranteed its customers that the Commission’s indictment does not affect its operations, saying they are conducting business as usual at all the branches in the country.