Africa-Press – Gambia. Family Members and victims of ex-President Yahya Jammeh from July 22, 1994 to January 19, 2017 have petitioned that Gambia Government, the Whitepaper to be launched, send Jammeh’s and adversely mentioned perpetrators to life imprisonment.
In line with the provisions of the Truth Reconciliation and Reparations Commission (TRRC) Act, the Government of the Gambia will on Wednesday 25, May 2022, release the Whitepaper on the report of the TRRC presided over by Attorney General and Minister of Justice.
The former President Yahya Jammeh, his former Vice Presidents, Edward Singhateh and Dr. Isatou Njie Saidy, members of the Jungulars and other senior security officer have been adversely mentioned and also indicted in the report for committing heinous human rights violations between July, 1994 to January 2017.
“I don’t think those who committed heinous crimes cannot be offered any amnesty, gruesome killers cannot qualify for any amnesty. Anyone who committed serious crimes that amounts to human rights violations should not be offered any amnesty,” Baba Hydara, son of late journalist Deyda Hydara said.
He added: “It is very unfortunate that amnesty is offered to Sanna Sabally, he should not have been granted amnesty. To me Sanna and anyone who committed mass murders should not benefit any amnesty, I believe his case is not different from those who committed heinous crimes and human rights violations,” Baba Hydara.
According to him, the Whitepaper will determine how committed the Gambia government is to end lawlessness in the country, arguing how the government implements the contents of the whitepaper in ensuring that the right thing is done will go a long way to attract the confidence of the victims as the international community is concerned.
Abdou Karim Jammeh, victim of the April 2000 students demonstration submitted that former President Yahya Jammeh, former Vice President Dr. Isatou Njie Saidy and all those soldiers who fired on student protesters on 10th and 11th, 2000, should face the heaviest punishment, adding that killing innocent and defenseless students tantamount to the highest form of human rights violations.
Abdou Karim Jammeh was shot on his angle on that faithful April 10th, 2000, when more than a dozen students were shot dead by security forces, he is currently using crunches to run errands.
According to him, victims of the former regime are expecting the government Whitepaper to contain nothing less than punishment for all those who committed atrocities and human rights violations in the country.
“The whitepaper will determine whether ‘Never Again’ is truly ‘Never Again’, ” he noted.
“We the victims of the 10th and 11th, we are urged by the government to declare these dates as a public holiday or school holiday in the Gambia to commemorate and remember not only April 10th and April 14/ 16 victims but equally for all the victims of human rights violations that happen during the days of the dictatorship.
We want the government to abolish the Public Order Act, Indemnity Act and all bad laws in our constitution and put up proper reforms measures that wouldn’t allow a replica of the Yahya Jammeh regime,” Jammeh recommended.
“As for me, I am not expecting any lesser punishment than life imprisonment for Yahya Jammeh and all of his accomplices who committed the most human rights abuses in this country. We expect the whitepaper will capture our wishes so that what happened in this country from 1994-2017, will never repeat itself again,” Aziz Barrow, son to late Lieutenant Basirou Barrow observed.
According to him, if perpetrators are treated without mercy other would-be perpetrators will never dare to commit human rights abuses in the country, stressing that all those who splits blood in this country should be made to pay a heavy price for their actions and inactions.
“Yahya Jammeh should never be accorded amnesty because he was the cause of all the atrocities that occurred in this country during his reign. If the government can prosecute and impose life imprisonment on ordinary Gambians why not Yahya Jammeh face similar faith for his own work to be announced to him on his birthday,” Aziz Barrow argued.