Anti Corruption indictment: Mayor to testify under oath

By Salifu Conteh

The suspended City Mayor Herbert Akieremi George Williams 1st accused person who is standing trial on indictment charges by the Anti Corruption Commission on corruption and other related offences yesterday after conferring with his lawyer, Mr. Yada Williams told the court that he relies on the statement made at the ACC and would want to testify in the dock under oath and also call on two witnesses.

It could be recalled that nine accused persons, Mayor Herbert Williams (1st Accused), Chief Administrator, Bowenson Frederick Phillips (2nd Accused), Sylvester Momoh Konnehi (3rd Accused), Arthur Kwasi John (4th Accused), Desmond Thomas (5th Accused), Franklyn Gabber (6th Accused), Alimamy Turay (7th Accused), Aiah Brima (8th Accused), and Mohamed Shaban (9th Accused) were indicted by the Anti Corruption Commission for corrupt practices and abuse of office.

This came after the Prosecution presented their nineteenth witness and closed its case.

The prosecution led by female lawyer, Miatta Maria Samba presented their final witness PW19, Dr. Zubaru Ahmad Kalakoh, General Manager of the National Power Authority, and presented original cheques as exhibit before the court. PW19 was crossed examined by the lead defense Lawyer.

In the cross examination by Mr. Yada Williams, PW19 was shown exhibit MM (1-2) photocopy cheques and requested to produce the originals of these documents for the court. PW19 produced both originals which were marked as exhibit WWWW (1-2) which contained a cheque issued to the National Power Authority by the Freetown City Council. He continued that the crossed cheque was dislodged at the NPA account held at the Guarantee Trust  Bank, but was dishonoured and sent back to the NPA with reasons proffered among which is that the account has no funding. PW19 (Dr. Kalokoh) added that his company (NPA) did not benefit anything from the cheque in question.

The Judge Justice Katutsi, admonished the accused persons on the right and trial procedures of such matter. He told them that the prosecution has closed their case and at this stage the law permits for reactions; that is whether they would rely on their statements or wish to testify and call witnesses.

All accused persons after thorough consultation with their clients, the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 9th accused persons said they relied on their statements while the 1st 6th, 7th and 8th accused persons said they would like to give evidence under oath and call two witnesses.

The matter was adjourned to Wednesday 21 March this year.

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