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Gunjur v Golden Lead: Frustrations mount as case staggers


Frustrations are mounting as Gunjur v Golden Lead case staggers, amid “festering” environmental damage.


Photo: Golden Lead Fish-meal Processing plant in Gunjur

The environmental damage case involving Gunjur (GDA, ECGG, GUNJUR PROJECT, GEPADG) and Chinese Fish-meal processing Company, Golden Lead, has suffered a setback with motions and counter motions. One of the lawyers for the community instituting legal action against the company, Lawyer Lamin J Darbo has indicated that at the sitting against Golden Lead at the High Court on Thursday, 9th November for motion, the lawyer for Golden Lead has objected to this and as such, "Judge to rule on issues joined".

However, the objection to proceeding with the motion/application for an injunction was answered by Lawyer Mboge as Senior Counsel for Gunjur and a ruling is due on 28 November 2017.

During the proceedings, the complainant's lead counsel lawyer Lamin Mboge made their witnesses available in court, whilst the defendant's counsel lawyer Lamin Camara was unable to produce any witnesses. He was asked by the court why he could not produce the witness to which he indicated that the witness was unable to appear because she has had to travel to China with her sick mother.

However, the lawyer for the complainant refuted that claim and informed the court that the company have a Gambian manager by the name of Dembo Darboe who is presently in the Gambia. The court ordered that the defendant's lawyer must produce the witness in next sitting.

It could be recalled that Golden Lead company which operates a fish-meal processing company on Gunjur beach stand accused of serious environmental pollution and degradation. The lawyers for the community environmental groups have filed a perpetual injunction at the High Court to prevent the company from any further pollution to the environment.

On the perpetual injunction, the defendant's lawyer argued that the injunction should not move on or stand because there is no more bad odour from the activities of the company. However, this was strongly refuted by the counsel for the complainant that his witnesses are from Gunjur and they said the odour is still on going.

The injunction follows a civil suit filed against the company by the environmental and other concerned parties in Gunjur claiming D15 million in damages. The case which was scheduled to be heard at the High Court on 25th October failed to proceed on the appointed day as the presiding judge was said to be out of the jurisdiction.

COMPLAINANT: (GDA, ECGG, GUNJUR PROJECT, GEPADG) are represented by Lawyers Lamin J Darboe and Lamin Mboge and the DEFENDANT (Golden Lead Company) is represented by Lawyer Lamin S Camara.

The hearing continues on Tuesday 28th November


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