NYC executive director explains GYCC saga

NYC executive director explains GYCC saga

By Sulayman Waan

Alhagie Jarju, executive director of the National Youth Council (NYC) has explained the saga between the Board of Gambia Youth Chamber of Commerce (GYCC) and its Chief Executive Officer Baboucarr Kebbeh.

Recently the Board of GYCC accused the National Youth Council (NYC) and National Enterprise Development Initiative (NEDI) of covering-up a “corruption scandal” at GYCC – a claim that NYC countered to clarify. 

In a press statement shared with Mamos media, Mr. Jarju explained the entire saga, saying: “In December 2022, a member of the interim Board brought a case against Mr. Kebbeh, alleging misconduct and refusal to adhere to instructions, and brought it to the attention of the board’s chair Mr Sambou.” 

“Mr. Sambou summoned the Board to an emergency meeting and both sides narrated their side of the story. After the said meeting, the majority of the board members in attendance noted that the said allegations or claims against the CEO were found to be not worthy of suspension,” Jarju explained.  

He added that Mr. Sambou was not happy with the outcome of the meeting and went ahead to dismiss the board members who did not agree with the proposal to suspend the CEO.

He eventually suspended the CEO without a board meeting. Another of his excesses was to write to the vice president of the interim board (Mr. Adama Beyai) and served him a warning letter for requesting a copy of the GYCC constitution through the then legal adviser of the Board, Patience H. Foster, he said.

According to Mr. Jarju, “Mr. Kebbeh brought these complaints against Ismaila Sambou to NYC and NEDI and the Ministry of Trade, Regional Integration and Employment (MOTIE). The Council set up a normalisation committee comprising MOTIE, NEDI, National Youth Service Scheme (NYSS), and the International Trade Center (ITC).” 

He added that following their first meeting, Mr. Sambou was asked to write a letter to the CEO and rescinded his decision and recall all the Board members to the Board. He said the decision to suspend the CEO was thus rescinded.

“An Audit Firm was also hired by the GYCC without any outside interference. Whilst all these processes are ongoing, to our dismay, Mr. Sambou went ahead and constituted a Board on his own instead of continuing with the existing Board,” Jarju claimed. 

He added that Mr. Sambou was also delaying the audit process by holding on to the 2018 files containing supporting documents of financial transactions for that year. 

“We made several attempts to stop the illegal composition of the new Board and to return the files in his possession for the audit exercise to progress smoothly but to no avail. We have no options but to dissolve the GYCC Board as dictated by the NYC Act of 2000,” he concluded.


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