By Sam Phatey
Gambia’s erstwhile strongman, Yahya Jammeh has left less than five million dalasis ($125,000) in a tax recovery account opened in a local bank, a commission probing his assets heard.
The Chief Executive Officer of Trust Bank, Ebrima Sallah told the Commission that $850,000 (D34 million dalasis) was deposited into the account and $725,000 (D29 million dalasis) has been withdrawn.
Sallah said the withdrawals left under $125,000 million (D5 million dalasis) in the account at the time of Jammeh’s abrupt departure from power.
At least 29 withdrawals were made, including payments to individuals former State House commander, Gen. Ansumana Tamba, Sanna Jarju, Toni Ghatson, Sheriff Sawaneh, Gayi Enterprise, and Alagie Jallow.
The checks and letters authorizing payments, some in millions of dalasis were signed by Jammeh’s former chiefs of staff.
Sallah has denied directly managing the account as the chief executive of the bank. He named one of his senior officials, Fatou Bah as the authorized account manager.
Jammeh had opened another tax recovery account at GTBank. The Commission is yet to hear the transactions on that account.
Gambia’s revenue chief and accountant general said they are not aware of the account until recently. Individuals and businesses had disputed tax bills sent to them by the revenue authority in the past citing that they have made payments.
The payments are now turning out to have been delivered to the two special accounts Jammeh created at the Trust Bank and GTBank, which gave him unreserved access to millions of tax dalasis.
Culled from SMBC Gambia News