Archive | July 2016

Gambia: Where is Solo Sandeng’s Body? After Gov’t Admiting Killing Him

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Mr Solo Ebrima Sandeng at Westfield protesting in Gambia before his killing

A precedent has been set in the case of Solo Sandeng at the high court in Banjul on Thursday, 28 July 2016 after the judge had confirmed that Solo was killed by Gambia’s notorious National Intellegent Agency (NIA) agents. The Judge presiding over the case for the government to provide the whereabouts of Ebrima Solo Sandeng produced a death certificate and an affidavit from Sir Jeng (NIA agent) which stated that, the State cannot produce Solo Sandeng alive. Effectively meaning, Solo is dead.

This is only the second time after the killings of 14 students in April 2000 in Yahya Jammeh’s 22 years of mass arrest, torture and killings that his government had admitted to killing someone, which in itself is a victory to all those who sacrifice everything to see that Solo is produce dead or alive. Continue reading

Gambia: “I Feel Very Troubled at Heart for the Peace we Once Cherished is Under Threat,” Ann Therese Ndong Jatta

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Regional Director of UNESCO, Mrs Ann Therese Ndong Jatta

Mrs Ann Therese Ndon Jatta the former minister of Education in Jammeh’s government and now the Regional Director of UNESCO based in Dakar, Senegal has challenged the people of the Gambia, especially, the religious leaders to act now and salvage the peace in the Gambia before it’s too late.

Read in her own words…

“Where are our men of wisdom, integrity and good judgement who silently watch a whole nation torn apart? Where is justice? Why is the Nation brought to its knees because of fear. What must be done now? If this has gone beyond the people to defend themselves then the rest of humanity must be invited to salvage the nation? Where are the religious leaders? Certainly there is no religion which condones injustice.

Since he told you in his address at Koriteh to be challenged or be informed when things are not right or where he has gone wrong, please act now before it is too late. Do so tomorrow or before the start of next week. Pray in all churches and mosques across the nation and in the diaspora and call upon GOD’s intervention. GOD loves the Gambia.

I am sure Yahya has not been advised right by those who are more au fait with the justice system. Or are they also under the spell of fear! Is his cabinet also under the same spell? The only fear for me is the backlash. Gambians must sincerely call for a dialogue with the authorities and stem the tide of a possible chaos.

This is not the time for opposition parties to rejoice as they could be the next to be brought to their knees in his cherry picking strategy. Fear must not create this state of inaction. Dialogue with the functionaries of State is urgent. Please let us together find peaceful means to salvage the nation so that we do not all go down together.

It could be worse than Rwanda if we take up a response anticipated by the regime. We cannot be any match for military response from within. I invite Religious leaders of the different faith base to come together and agree on a way to advise the President and his cabinet. This is beyond politics. GOD bless Gambia and its people! I feel very troubled at heart for the Peace we once cherished is under threat!”

UK-Gambia 22nd July protest massively attended by Gambians and Friends of the Gambia in London

Gambians and friends of the Gambia in the UK have come out in their large numbers on Friday 22nd July 2016 to stage a massive protest outside the Nigerian embassy in London. Protesters started gathering from 12pm BST at Trafalgar Square and by 1pm opening prayers were said and immediately after that protesters marched to the Nigerian embassy chanting and singing.

At the Nigerian embassy, protesters continued to chant to denounce the actions of Nigerian mercenary judges in the Gambia, especially the so-called Justice Odada and Justice Abi. These two judges are the ones that recently jailed opposition United Democratic Party (UDP) leader Lawyer Ousainou Darboe and 18 others of his party executives to 3 years imprisonment for exercising their constitutional rights.

The turnout was massive and energetic as people came all the way from Sweden, US and France to attend the protest. Among the protesters were Benny Ebrima Williamson, who was on holiday in the UK, but took time to attend the protest. Benny spoke of his frustration and anger against Crackpot Yahya Jammeh’s continual destruction of the country that we all cherish.

A Nigerian embassy staff came out of the embassy to attend to the protesters and took photographs and videos of the protest. He also acknowledges our rights to protest against the dictatorship in the Gambia. However, some of the embassy members of staff were not happy that we chanted “shame on Nigeria”, as they see that to be offensive.

Meanwhile, other speakers at the protest include Lawyer Lamin Darboe who demanded the immediate release of all prisoners of conscience in the Gambia. Yanks Darboe, and Bamba Mass all spoke at the protest and directly challenged Yahya Jammeh to be man enough and do the right thing to release Darboe and Co.

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Mariama Juwara

Mariama Juwara, the daughter of Lamin Waa Juwura spoke at length about Jammeh’s lack of humanity and warned Yahya to be mindful of tomorrow. Madam Tamba, a relative to Yahya Jammeh and one time staunch supporter of the Jammeh regime also spoke emotionally about how Yahya killed his uncle, Basata Kujabi in 1996.

Mrs Tamba also lamented how Jammeh dismissed, tortures and jailed her brother who was a former bodyguard to Jammeh’s mother Asombi Bojang.

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Mrs Tamba

“Yahya Jammeh has damaged my family, my mum had a socked and still she has never recovered from that. My brother’s wife was eight months pregnant and when the news came of the arrest and torture of my brother, his wife immediately gave birth and the baby couldn’t survive due to the stressed and trauma the family was put under,” Mrs Tamba said. Madam Tamba went on to say how Yahya Jammeh humiliated his own people of Foni by labelling them witches, an accusation which led to the death of so many in the country at the time. In the same vein, Gidom Bah condemned Jammeh’s autocratic rule in the Gambia and called on the government to let people be free to express their opinion.

Meanwhile, Ebrima Darboe and Sulayman Darboe nephews to the jailed opposition leader, lawyer Ousainou Darboe were all in attendance. Ebrima who has been attending protest on regular basis spoke at the protest to demonstrate his anger at the injustices meted out on his Uncle and his party members. Sulayman Darboe also spoke and send a direct message to Yahya Jammeh “Yahya you are a criminal, if you think jailing UDP leadership will let you escape the end of your time, you are making a big mistake, as we are coming to take back our country from your criminal regime,” Mr Darboe warned.

Yusuf Dan Taylor, one of the organisers of the protest gave a vote of thanks for the large turnout to the cry of our beloved nation, Gambia.

For more photos, visit our Facebook page: Gambia Voices or twitter: @GambiaVoices.

 

Gambia: Opposition UDP leader Lawyer Darboe and Co Found Guilty and Sentence to 3 Years in Prison

IMG_7460The trial of Gambia’s main opposition party leader Lawyer Ousainou Darboe and 19 others have been concluded on Wednesday 20th July at the High Court in Banjul, Gambia. All accused persons have been found guilty except one Yahya Bah, who was found not guilty in all counts.

According to the verdict read by the presiding judge, Justice Dada, Darboe and Co were not guilty on count three (Incitement of Violence) as the prosecution failed to prove the case beyond doubt. However, they have been found guilty on the remaining 6 counts.

Sentence

Mr Darboe and Co have been sentenced to three (3) years in prison and the defendants are expected to begin their prison terms with immediate effect.

Count One: all accused persons are found guilty and sentenced to a year in prison

Count Two: all accused persons are found guilty and sentenced to six months in prison

Count Three: all accused persons not found guilty

Counts Four and Five: all accused persons are found guilty and sentenced to six months in prison

Counts Six: all accused persons are found guilty and sentenced to three years

Count Seven: all accused persons are found guilty and sentenced to six months in prison.

All sentences to run concurrently.

According to Omar Ann, the sentencing is a “travesty of justice in the highest order.” Mr Ann called on Gambians to rise up and reclaim their country back from Yahya Jammeh.

More to follow…