By John Ikani
Gambia’s Truth, Reconciliation and Reparations Commission (TRRC), says ex-President Yahya Jammeh is responsible for the killing of West African migrants, including nine Nigerians.
Jammeh, who now lives in exile in Equatorial Guinea since his departure from the Gambia in January 2017, was accused of human rights abuses, including extrajudicial killings, torture, and arbitrary detention.
The TRRC was set up by President Adama Barrow, his successor, to investigate the allegations against him.
In a 172-page report recently released in Banjul, the commission investigated 18 themes including the killing of West African migrants stranded in The Gambia in their attempt to transit to Europe, enforced disappearance, attack on media and political opponents, killing of student demonstrators among others.
Witnesses had told the commission that migrants bound for Europe from Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Liberia, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo, including their Gambian contact, were held by Jammeh’s top lieutenants in the security services before being murdered by the “Junglers,” a notorious paramilitary unit that took orders from the ex-President.
In a report published on Friday, the commission said Jammeh alongside “Tumbul Tamba, Kawsu Camara (Bombardier), Bai Lowe, Musa Badjie, Landing Tamba, Sanna Manjang, Solo Bojang, Malick Jatta, Alieu Jeng, Omar Jallow (Oya), Lamin Sillah and Buba Jallow are responsible for the murder of the West African migrants”.
The TRRC said the ex-President is also responsible for the persecution and unlawful arrest of Gambian journalists, the killing of 17 civilians, and for the deaths, sexual violence, torture of persons accused of being witches or wizards.
The commission also found Jammeh responsible for the sexual abuse of three women, including the rape of Fatou Jallow, a former Gambian beauty queen.
The TRRC said: “Any adversely mentioned individual who has previously appeared before the commission and made a full disclosure of his or her involvement in human rights violations and abuses and has expressed remorse is hereby granted a period of 14 days to apply to the Commission for amnesty.
“The Government will continue its review of the TRRC report as well as any recommendations for amnesty and shall issue a White Paper on or before the 25th of May 2022.”
Mr Jammeh, alongside several accomplices, was found guilty of most of the allegations and recommended for prosecution.
The commission also recommended payment of compensation to the victims.