By Rohey Jadama and Muhammad Bah Mr. Sulayman Bah, the friend of late Ya Binta Jarju and first prosecution witness (PW1) in the case involving Mr. Mustapha Njie, the driver of the taxi in which the fatal shooting occurred, told the court that the security personnel ignored his appeal to help him take Ya Binta to hospital and left.Mr. Bah was testifying before Magistrate Patrick Gomez of the Kanifing Magistrates’ Court yesterday, Thursday, 19th March, 2015. Mr. Njie has pleaded guilty to counts one and four i.e. ‘Failure to stop when required’ and ‘Unlicensed Driving’ and was fined Four Thousand Dalasi (D4000) and One Thousand Dalasi (D1000), respectively. He is now facing trial on counts two and three, namely ‘Disobedience to lawful order’ and Rash and Negligent Act Causing Death’ and to which he pleaded not guilty. The accused is represented by Lawyer Edward Gomez and the IGP by ASP Mballow. PW1 told the Court that the late Ya Binta was his friend and he took her out for dinner at Samba’s restaurant situated near the Palma Rima Hotel in Kololi. He said it was around 11pm when they hired Mustapha Njie to take them home with his taxi. He said both him and the late Ya Binta were seated at the back of the taxi and that the latter sat behind the driver’s seat. Mr. Bah told the Court that as they were coming towards a security check-point near the Elton filling station in Manjai, the driver told them that he was not going to stop as he did not put his seat belt on, adding that the security personnel are going to waste their time if they stopped. He said he asked the driver to stop otherwise their time will be wasted more but that he (driver) did not pay heed. He said when they reached the check point the driver did as he said and was shouted at by the security personnel but he continued driving. Mr. Bah said the late Ya Binta also shouted at the driver to stop and told him that he is putting their lives at risk if he does not stop. He said the security then followed them with their vehicle and later overtook the taxi and stopped in front of it. He said they fired three warning shots but their driver turned the taxi and took a side street. He said the security again followed them and shot at their car. The witness said he was then struggling with the driver to stop the car and it eventually hit a fence made of trees and finally stopped. Mr. Bah told the Court that as he turned around, he saw blood oozing from the head of Ya Binta and that when he called out her name, she did not respond. He said he then brought her out of the car and asked the security personnel who followed them and fired the shot to help him rush her to hospital but they ignored him and left. He said it was the people in the neighbourhood who came out and offered help. He said he then made a call to both his family and Ya Binta’s to inform them about the incident. Mr. Bah told the Court that he gave a statement at Manjai Police and also at Kairaba Police station where he was detained before being taken to Banjul Police Headquarters for questioning. He said he was granted bail in Banjul.]]>
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