By Lamin Njie
The Barrow administration has halted ‘all sales’of properties stemming from the Janneh Commission’s recommendations, the ministry of justice has announced.
The ministry of justice has been busy selling assets of former President Yahya Jammeh and his associates after the Janneh commission recommended that they should be sold off.
The exercise however suffered a setback earlier this week when the Gambia Court of Appeal ruled against the government saying the Janneh Commission wasn’t an adjudicatory body. The ruling has put the Barrow government in difficult spot.
The ministry of justice reacted to the appellate court’s 1 June ruling in the M.A Kharafi case against the government on Friday saying the court did not in any way state that the Janneh Commission recommendations cannot be enforced, in an attempt to push back at suggestions it was engaged in illegality.
“The Government notes that different interpretations of the ruling are being offered by many including sections of the media,” the ministry of justice said in a statement.
It added: “The Government wishes to clarify to the general public that The Gambia Court of Appeal did not in any way state that the Janneh Commission recommendations cannot be enforced.
“Rather, in a departure from long established practice in this jurisdiction, the Court of Appeal held that an additional legal step needs to be taken by the Executive in order to execute some, and not all, of the recommendations of a commission of inquiry such as the Janneh Commission.
“Indeed, the Gambia Court of Appeal has accepted, in the said ruling, that the position arrived at by the Court in this matter is a novel one.”
The ministry of justice then announced the government is putting on hold ‘all sales’ of properties stemming from the Janneh commission’s recommendations.
“Meanwhile, consistent with the Government’s strong commitment to respect for the rule of law, all sales of properties flowing from the Janneh Commission recommendations have now been suspended in deference to the ruling of the court of appeal until a final pronouncement is made on the matter,” the ministry said.
The ministry said the government plans to seek further litigation regarding the ruling.
“The Government however disagrees with this position by the Court of Appeal and intends to further litigate this matter,” the ministry said.