Fatou Touray, CEO of Kerr Fatou media outlet (5th accused), Fatoumata Rahman Coker, CEO of Elite Media(2nd accused), Neneh J. Thompson(1st accused) Fatou Jaria Susso(3rd accused), and Fatoumata Drammeh, widely known as ‘Tima la Waato’ (4th accused), have been charged with unauthorized publication of proceedings at the Children’s Court contrary to Section 73(1) of the Children’s Act 2005.
According to the particulars of offence on Count One, Neneh J. Thompson, Fatoumata Rahman Coker, Fatou Jaria Susso, Fatoumata Drammeh, and Fatou Touray, sometime between the months of January and February 2021, published the matter of Samsudeen Phatey V. Neneh J. Thompson pending at the Brikama Children’s Court, without leave of the court, thereby committed an offence.
The complainant Samsudeen Phatey, a Gambian journalist and human rights activist based in the USA, has filed his suit through his Attorney (Mariama Cham, his mother). The complainant is legally represented by Lawyer Malick H.B Jallow as a Private Prosecutor.
Three of the accused persons were said to be residing out of The Gambia (abroad) at the moment while the other two are residing in the country.
Information gathered also revealed that the 5th accused person Fatou Touray’s summons was sent to her office.
The 4th accused person Fatoumata Drammeh could not get her summons on time.
However, Magistrate Peter A. Che of the Brikama Magistrate’s Court, issued an arrest warrant for all the accused persons to be arrested and brought before his court last Monday, 25th July 2022 for plea taking but the plea taking could not hold as the accused persons could not attend Monday’s court hearing on time.
The 5th accused person Fatou Touray was able to make it to the court on Monday.
However, she was said to have arrived late after the court has finished sitting. Ms. Touray was then granted bail in the sum of D200,000 with two Gambian sureties.
The 4th accused person Fatoumata Drammeh, also made it to the court later by herself and was granted bail in the sum of D100,000.
The Order for the arrest warrant signed by Magistrate Peter A. Che stated: “Based on an application for a bench warrant against the accused persons herein by Private Prosecutor MHB Jallow, I accordingly issue a bench warrant for all the accused persons herein to be arrested and brought before me. The Gambia Police Force is ordered to execute this order as a matter of urgency. Matter adjourned to Monday the 25th day of July 2022 for plea taking.”
End of quote.
The case has been adjourned to the 1st August for pea taking and 3rd of August for hearing.