Probe into Ex Gambian Leader Begins

President Yahya Jammeh of Gambia attends the 44th summit of the 15-nation west African bloc ECOWAS at the Felix Houphouet-Boigny Foundation in Yamoussoukro on March 28, 2014. The 15-member Economic Community of West African States said the Ebola outbreak was now "a serious threat to regional security" and appealed for help from the international community.Guinea's capital Conakry was on high alert Friday after a deadly Ebola epidemic which has killed dozens in the southern forests was confirmed to have spread to the sprawling port city of two million people. AFP PHOTO / ISSOUF SANOGO (Photo credit should read ISSOUF SANOGO/AFP/Getty Images)

The commission in charge of investigating former Gambian leader President Yahya Jammeh’s finances has started its hearings.

The country’s ministry of justice believes tens of million dollars of public money were siphoned off from state funds by the former leader during his 22-year rule.

Three bankers and the director of the revenue service were questioned at the start of the public hearings.

These aim to shed light on two issues, the mining activities of one of Mr Jammeh’s companies, and the alleged disappearance of taxpayer’s money.

The commission of investigation was set up by the new government of President Adama Barrow in July.

Its five members will look into allegations of abuse of power, embezzlement of public funds, and possible violations of the constitution.

Earlier this year, $50m in assets, including 86 bank accounts and over 100 properties were seized from Mr Jammeh by the government.

The charity of the former ruler, the Jammeh Foundation for Peace, is also under scrutiny.

President Jammeh ruled The Gambia for 22 years until he lost the 2016 elections to Barrow. In January he fled the country and settled in Equatorial Guinea.

Source: BBC Africa