The court martial of Brigadier Generals Ansumana Tamba and Umpa Mendy of the Gambia Armed Forces is set to deliver its verdict anytime soon, according to reliable sources familiar with the case.   

The two senior army commanders are being charged with desertion contrary to the Gambia Armed Forces Act.

They are accused of deserting their command positions when they left the Gambia in January 2017 with former president, Yahya Jammeh to Equatorial Guinea where they had stayed for over a year.

The commanders were arrested upon their return to the country last year by the Military Police Unit of the Gambia Armed Forces.

The court martial is presided over by Advocate Judge Amina Sawo. The prosecution closed its case after calling its witnesses and the two generals made a robust defence after the court dismissed their no case to answer submission. The duo said they are innocent and that the trial was a witch-hunt by opponents seeking revenge.

According to sources no date has been fixed for the judgment but the parties to the case are awaiting the hearing notices regarding the date for the judgment.

General Umpa Mendy and General Ansumana Tamba were members of former President Jammeh’s close protection officers. They have been accused of being members of the infamous and much feared hit squad ‘The Jungulars’.

This secret paramilitary group has been accused of gross and systemic human rights abuses including extrajudicial killings, torture and disappearances of opponents of the former president Jammeh during his 22 year rule.  

If found guilty the former army commanders will spend long years behind bars.

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