By Baba Sillah
After much delay and procrastination, ‘Prince’ Ibrahim Sanyang, the managing director of Royal Africa Capital Holdings Limited finally appeared before the Janneh Commission yesterday.
He was designated a close associate of the former president and his assets frozen. They include Royal Africa Capital Holdings Limited, Africa Financial Services and Bureau de Change Limited, Africada Airways, Kora Media Corporation Limited, Atlantic Pelican Company Limited, Palm Groove Africa Development Corporation Limited, Royal Africa Securities Brokerage Limited and Africaade Insurance Company.
Testifying before the inquiry, Mr Sanyang gave a brief background of his education and qualifications and royal title.
Mr Sanyang who once claimed that he has more leveraging power than any Gambian and is potentially richer than even the state, claimed that his life was threatened in 2016 and that he was called by the police and asked to pay D10 million as instructed by an executive directive. He said he left the country and did not return until the change of government.
Sanyang introduced himself as an investment banker and economist adding that he got his prince title through a tradition dating to the Kaabu Empire.
Mr Sanyang further testified that he owns 90% of Royal Africa Capital Holdings Limited while the other shareholders are Sanna Jaiteh and Seedy Darboe. He clarified that he gave 10% nominal share to Ansumana Jammeh but later took it from him after a resolution was signed by both of them.
Mr Sanyang further explained that he had written to Eco Bank to remove Ansumana Jammeh as a signatory to the accounts and also to close the accounts that were dormant.
He disclosed to the inquiry that some of his companies in the country were operating until they were slapped with the freezing order by the court
He revealed that he gave D1.5 million to Ansumana Jammeh to buy a property for him but claimed he did not have the title deed of the property even after developing it.
Sanyang said Africada Airways was on the cusp of operations when the freezing order was slapped on him.
He asserted that he was working with the Central Bank to have a licence to operate a micro-finance business in the country.
On Palm Groove Company, he said the company is a real estate company which plans to build 15,000 homes in Accra, Ghana.
Sittings continue today.