(JollofNews) – As the Janneh Commission continues to dig into the financial dealings
of former longtime ruler Yahya Jammeh and his associates, Tuesday’s hearing unveiled the controversy surrounding the land Gambia Milling Company Ltd is occupying at Banjul Ports.
“The government gave us a five-year tax holiday, a protection from the importation of flour. And they also gave us acess to a navy land,” the Managing Director of Seaboard, Christophe Bardy told the Commission while
giving his testimony.
When counsel Amie Bensouda reminded him that he was summoned in relation to the land they occupy and which was part of Ports Authority, Bardy said it was acquired under a land lease agreement endorsed by the then Minister of Lands and Gambia Milling Corporation Ltd (GMC).
“Do you have any document from the government to show how ports land came to be leased to your company?”
Christophe Bardy, who also doubles as one of the directors of GMC, told the Commission that he will see if they have such a document.
At this juncture, counsel Bensouda took the opportunity to indicate that when the Office of the President required for Gambia Ports
Authority to give them the land it was on the basis that compensation would be paid to Ports.
Bardy said they are paying a yearly rent. But was quick to add that their company is committed to building a number of infrastructures to be able to receive shipment of wheat…
Subjected to an intense question-and-answers session by the Commission of Inquiry lawyer, Bardy could not explain why the missives that were addressed by GPA to GMC were ignored.
Far more disturbing, GPA management seems to have been left in the dark about the lease agreement bearing the serial number K154/2013.