By Baba Sillah
The managing director of Guaranty Trust Bank, Ayodele Bolaji, yesterday revealed to the Janneh Commission that there were 26 transfers in three months from the account of the former First Lady’s Office at GT Bank.
Transfers were made to Morocco, the United States, France and other countries. He gave details of all the monies lodged in the account from its opening to its freezing.
According to the GTBank MD, there were four accounts opened in the name of the Office of the First Lady on 10 October, 2016, in dalasi, euro and dollar.
On the dalasi account, Mr Bolaji said Zineb Jammeh and Alagie Ousman Ceesay, the then chief of protocol, were the signatories and the first transaction took place the same day the account was opened while the last transaction was on 13 January 2017 and the total deposited into the account was D126, 844.20.
He added that this account was classified as government account because it was opened based on the letter the bank received from the Office of the First Lady and the balance in the account was D15.
On the dollar account, Bolaji stated that it was opened on 10 October, 2016 and the last transaction was 13 January 2017, and there was a total deposit of US$287, 451 leaving a balance US$8,691.
He said all the payments were in cash deposited by Alagie Ceesay.
At that juncture, the witness agreed with Counsel Bensouda’s suggestion that the accounts were used for the First Lady’s personal businesses.
On the Operation Save the Children Account, the GTBank boss said the account was both in dalasi and dollar and the signatories were the former First Lady and the former Vice President, Isatou Njie Saidy. The accounts according to him were opened on 29 January 2016 and there was a letter from the office of the former first lady, signed by Fatou Mass Jobe-Njie.
According to him, the first transaction was on 28 September 2016, while the last transaction was on 8 March 2017 before it was frozen.
He said there was a balance of US$597,165 and the sum of US$4,190 was transferred to TK Motors and that there was no transfer of dollars to hospitals.
On the dalasi account, Mr Bolaji revealed that the sum of D21,237,877.60 was deposited while the balance was D1,494,261.58 and the first transaction was on 16 February 2016 while the last transaction was on 28 November 2017. He added that the sources of these funds were from donor agencies and the Republic of China, which donated over US$400,000 into the dollar account.
He further disclosed that Jah Oil Company donated D1, 000,000 while Nawec donated, D400, 000, Gambia Revenue Authority, Gambia International Airline and Gambia Food Safety and Quality Assurance Agency donated significant amounts to the account through buying tables for dinner.
Sittings continue today.
Culled from The Standard newspaper