Breaking: Justice Ottaba recuses himself from opposition leader Ousainou Darboe and Co’s case

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Breaking news out of Banjul has confirmed that Justice Ottaba who is presiding over the case of Lawyer Ousainou Darboe and his Co accused and recused himself from the case effective today, May 16, 2016. The Judge is said to have advanced conflict of interest as a reason for his withdrawal from the case. He has since returned the case file back to The Chief Justice to reassign to another judge.




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It is not clear when the case will resume again and what this will mean for the continuous incarceration of Darboe and Co defendants currently held at The Mile two central prison. It is also not clear if Ottaba will be presiding over the case of the twenty five youth activists who have also been appearing before him.

 

It would be recalled that The fatu Network has conducted a prank interview with Justice Ottaba last Friday, May, 13, 2016 where he admitted that Lawyer Darboe’s case is more of a political trial.




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In a telephone conversation that lasted more than ten minutes and was broadcast live on The Fatu Network, the presiding judge, justice Ottaba was warned about the attempt by The Gambia Government to jail the leader of The Gambia biggest opposition party using trumped up charges at his court. The presiding judge, justice Ottaba, has admitted that he too was worried about the trend of the case, because being a judge, it was uncomfortable for him seeing a senior member of The Gambian bar being subjected to such a treatment.

 

 

The Presiding judge also said that he wished that the case could be amicably resolved using the Inter Party advisory Committee to mutually resolve what he calls a simmering political crisis.

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The Judge also said in political  matters like this, they are better resolved outside the courts where the different parties discuss the differences between them for continuous peace and stability.




Now that the Judge has recused himself from the case, activists and like minded Gambians are hoping that sanity will prevail and that the case will not be assigned to another mercenary judge.

 

 

Below is the audio recording of our interview with Justice Ottaba.

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