Gambian activist Dr. Amadou Scattred Janneh was on Monday released on bail after being arrested by the Police. He was reportedly arrested while attending a burial ceremony of his uncle in the coastal village of Gunjur, about 35 km away from Banjul.
Gunjarian environmentalist Mustapha Manneh told this medium that Dr.Janneh was let go home on D500,000 bail.
“He was asked to report today to Brikama Police station at 8:30 AM,” he added. “His arrest and subsequent release has to do with the removal of Golden Lead waste pipes.”
Environmental activists and Golden Lead have been at loggerheads over coastal pollution, with activists accusing the Chinese fishing company of discharging non-treated waste water into the sea, causing health hazards and the destruction of the existing ecosystem. As a result, a group of activists led by Amadou Janneh in March this year stormed the area and removed Golden Lead’s waste pipes.
Police spokesperson Lamin Njie, who spoke to this reporter, said Dr. Janneh has been charged with wilfull destruction of properties and conspiracy to commit crime.
Njie also said Dr. Janneh was out of the country when three activists were arraigned before a court of law and charged over the removal of Golden Lead company’s pipes.
This is an interesting case:
If, as has been reported, Golden Lead was using those pipes ILLEGALLY and under an ORDER to remove the pipes, would it be illegal for Dr Janneh and his fellow citizens to remove the pipes? Or let us use another example: it is unlawfully for a man to consort with a child under 18. Would it be unlawful for Dr Janneh to arrest that man (we call it “citizens arrest” here in UK)? It seems to me that in both cases the concerned citizens would be acting against an illegality to enforce the law and, therefore, their actions cannot be deemed criminal. The issue for the magistrates in both cases would be this:
1. Was the Golden Lead Pipe discharging into the ocean legally?
2. Was the man with a girl under 18?
If the answers be “Yes” the result is guilty. If the answers be “No”, the result is “Not Guilty”.