Sunday, 07 October 2012 13:37(Editorial) – The just ended False Information trial of Gumbo Touray, which ended with a landmark ruling, making him the first person to be freed from this new charge that seeks to discourage people from bringing serious state matters to the attention of the President, should be celebrated as the victory for the Gambian people.
From it good thinking and fair-minded Gambians and foreigners alike drew a sigh of relief, showing that despite its reputation, the Gambian judicial system still has some good parts not affected by the rot that has been the hallmark of its deliberations time and time again.
However, any verdict other than acquittal in this case would have shocked even the presiding judge himself. This is because the credibility of both Mr Touray and his highly reputed witnesses’ testimonies were just so compelling even to the layman.
But perhaps more importantly what the trial and the verdict seem to have suggested is that something really is wrong at the University of The Gambia, which needs to be corrected as soon as possible if standards and ethics are not to suffer at this prestigious institution.
It also means that blind support President Yahya Jammeh gives to the Vice Chancellor throughout this crisis and in the wake of the NDEA report is greatly misplaced.
The president must certainly be embarrassed by the ruling if not by the startling revelations made during the trial against the leadership style of the VC.
You see what; president Jammeh should realize that not all opinions can be suppressed especially in the academic world where research, debates and the need for best practice is indispensable to success.
Therefore Professor Kah is at the wrong place when he thinks that his style and methods would go unchallenged just because he gets the unquestionable support of the president. Such feelings are not realistic in the academic World.
Let the VC look elsewhere for work now. The Gumbo Touray trial and verdict is an indictment on his credibility and he should safeguard his integrity here and resign.
To the rest of the people concerned in this case, the lawyers and the presiding judge in particular, we say bravo for making The Gambia proud.
Giving false information to a public servant is a charge that has been used as weapon to shield incompetent people from been reported to the highest office, mainly through the machination of the President himself.
The Gumbo Touray verdict has proven that people with evidence have no fear to expose people and activities that are detrimental to the nation.
The courts would prove them right no matter how vested is the executive’s interest. We rest our case.
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