Fisheries Department faces corruption probe after leaked bribery audio 

The Fisheries Department is facing corruption investigation by the Ombudsman after leaked audio recording 

of the department’s top civil servant demanding bribery for illegal fishing in Gambian waters. 

Permanent Secretary Dr Bamba Banja was summoned for questioning at the Office of the Ombudsman where he was asked to submit documents relating to the work of the committee that handles out-of-court settlements pertaining to illegal fishing in Gambian waters.

The probe will  look into broader administrative issues and practices that can give rise to corruption, a spokesman for the Ombudsman said. 

Dr Banja, who has been suspended pending the investigation, has denied the allegations and said the the voice of the recording was not  him.

The alleged corruption was unearthed by Malagen newspaper. It alleged that permanent secretary Dr. Banja and his boss Fisheries Minister Gomez took bribes from Chinese fishing firm, Golden Lead Factory. 

Golden Lead has faced allegations of over fishing and environmental destruction along the Gambian coastline. 

Meanwhile government spokesperson Ebrahim Sankareh has confirmed that the police are investigating the bribery allegations.

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