Archive for the ‘Human Rights’ Category

“YES, I SAID IT. GO AND TELL YAYA JAMMEH THAT I SAID IT”, OJ DARES THE NOTORIOUS AGENTS OF JAMMEH BRUTAL SECURIY WHO GRACED HIS BRIKAMA RALLY UNINVITED

March 29, 2015
Reads :1502
OJ-PPP POLITICAL HEAVY WEIGHT

OJ-PPP POLITICAL HEAVY WEIGHT

GAMBIA'S POLITICAL WHORE

GAMBIA’S POLITICAL WHORE

The political rally organized by the Progressive People’s Party (PPP) today at Brikama, in the West Coast Region of The Gambia was very well attended and an absolute success says Omar Jallow, the Interim Leader of the PPP. In addressing the crowd, Omar Jallow compared the economy and the governance environment under Sir Dawda Jawara and under the 20-year dictatorship to highlight the stark difference.

OJ cite the case of the two ferries “Jokadu” and “Kansala” which were reported to have cost the regime D200,000,000 that are still moored at the Banjul port facilities.  These vessels have never seen service.  The PPP Interim Leader challenged Jammeh to tell Gambians what happened to the money.  “It is a shame” OJ rebuked, “that the Jammeh regime cannot provide a simple and regular ferry service which the PPP government was able to do without missing a single day of service over a 30 year period”.

The former Agriculture, Fisheries and Environment minister turned his attention on the high level of unemployment under the dictatorship, coupled with the abuse of human rights of Gambians that has led the young to vote with their feet by taking the dangerous “Back Way” to Europe via Libya and across the Mediterranean.  Omar Jallow posited he is more sympathetic to the plight of the young than being upset with them for risking their young and value lives in tempestuous Mediterranean Sea.  Thus, he understood the reason they had to look for greener pastures so that they can take care of their families at home.  “The Jammeh regime has failed the young”, says Omar Jallow, “by its inability to create jobs.  Instead, Gambia is losing jobs to Senegal and neighbouring countries”.

Most importantly, he challenged Yaya Jammeh to account for his personal wealth he accumulated within a span of twenty years since he accused  members of the PPP government of corruption which he used to justify the coup d’état of 1994.   He demanded that Jammeh explains the rationale behind his two Rolls Royce sedans, one of each costing $ 500,000. Readers will recall that Jammeh reprimanded the PPP of living a flamboyant life in 1994.   At this point he turned to the crowd to say to the security agents, who were suspected to be around, as if addressing them directly when he said, “Yes, I said it.  Go and tell Yaya Jammeh that I said it”.

Omar Jallow criticized Jammeh for degrading the army by turning soldiers into his personal herdsmen. It is common sight to see soldiers herding Jammeh’s cattle in the Kombos.  At some point in his speech, he quipped, “When your president sells bread and meat, then it is time to get a new president.”

On the human rights front, Omar Jallow urges Jammeh to stop the abuse of the human rights of Gambians.  He cited the example of Mambury Njie who, after being freed by a court of law, was rearrested and held in remand without charge.  He ended up being sick and is hospitalized with police guarding him at the hospital.

What looked like intimidation tactic employed by NIA agents present at the rally, they appeared to be taking down names of those in the crowd they suspected of being government employees.  What they will do with the names is anyone’s guess.   The impressive size of the crowd may have contributed to the nervousness displayed by the security agents who were probably not expecting that many people to brave the threats that Jammeh usually employ against his opponents.  Well, it did not work today.

 

Courtesy of Sidi Sanneh Blogger

“I AM IN FULL NEGOTIATION WITH SENEGAL”, SEDIA BAYO INTIMATED

March 26, 2015
Reads :1508
SEDIA BAYO NTCG LEADER

SEDIA BAYO NTCG LEADER

PRESIDENT SALL

PRESIDENT SALL

The leader of National Transitional Council of The Gambia, Sheikh Sedia Bayo, who was expel from Senegal by the Sall government for his dissident activities, has said he is in full negotiation with Senegalese authorities for his immediate return.

Speaking in an interview with Kibaaro News, Sedia, currently in France said: “Given its proximity to The Gambia, I am in full negotiations with the Senegalese authorities to reach an agreement on the conditions which would allow my immediate return to continue NTCG campaign against Yaya Jammeh. I think the Senegalese government is not candidly aware of the political tactics Yaya Jammeh is using against them. And this is what is creating all these problems of allowing Gambian opposition to conduct their activities within Senegal. Since it might be premature to further comment on this issue given the involvement of a foreign government I deem it fitting to leave matters in camera until my comeback in Senegal in near…”

Speaking to the media since he was expel from Senegal on court orders, Sedia remain strong in carrying out his activities to see that sanity is restored in The Gambia. Ask about the position of his party in the forthcoming elections, Bayo, Gambian born French citizen noted: “Well, until there are political and constitutional reforms together with a strong and formidable coalition party to contest the elections against Dictator Yaya Jammeh, my position remains that we boycott the elections. Because if the elections are held today Yaya is going to rig them as there is no level political playing field. You will agree with me that Yaya has hegemonies over the control of everything in the Country.  Nothing matters in the Gambia today other than Yaya Jammeh. All the institutions and instruments in place to carry out elections procedures and process are in his favor. Furthermore, a boycott is advisable. This is because doing election and contesting against a dictator is a means of recognizing and legitimizing his leadership. In solidarity with all forces that want to effect a change of government in the Gambia…”

He went on to add: “There is no recognizable government in the first place as far as I am concern and NTCG does not recognize Yaya Jammeh as President of the Gambia. He is a vermin who has and is continuously trampling upon the freedom and rights of the people living in The Gambia. Openly, Yaya has made injustice and lawlessness as the order of the day…. “Bayo paused. After what appeared a lost in thoughts, he asserted, “….Yaya is an accident for the Gambia. Look at his record on the violation of people’s rights. He is only qualified to win a prize on torture, enforced disappearances of many people, detention without trial,  arrest and  caving of  journalists, muzzling of the press,  executions, summary killings the list goes on and on….”

Recalling December 30 coup attempt, Bayo enunciated: “Since the December 30th, 2014 failed attack to remove him by the gallant freedom fighters, Yaya has taken into custody many innocent relatives of suspects without according them any fair trial. In fact some with zero trial including a 13 year old boy.  Unconfirmed sources reported that there are two Gambian-Americans missing in the country on top of the already disappeared Alhagie Mamut Ceesay and Mr. Ebou Jobe also Native-Americans”.

While advising for unity in Diaspora, Bayo stress that: “My advice for them is a simple one. We should attempt to come up with one coalition of all the groups and other political units outside the Gambia in a planned Diaspora Conference to face Yaya Jammeh and that we should all know that the fight against Yaya cannot be won by one man. As Unity will make us to stand strong and division will always weaken us. We have a common enemy and that’s Yaya Jammeh and he is our target, objective and business.”

By Sainey MK Marena

BACK-WAY PHENOMENON! MODERN DAY BOAT PEOPLE  – GAMBIAN YOUTHS!

March 25, 2015
Reads :691
Illegal Migrants

African exodus

By PPP   Media

Following  the end of the Vietnam War in 1975,  and the economic collapse caused by US sanctions, hundreds of thousands fled the country in rickety boats to  mostly shores along the South East Asian coastlines. Most of them were hoping to land in Singapore and Hong Kong. The plight of these economic and political refugees became the best indicator of what a failed state looks like long before the term became popular  in modern political lexicon. That phenomenon  in Vietnam continued for some twenty years, and  today they seem to be turning the corner.

By all accounts, Gambian youths have become the modern day Boat People in this 21st century, in 2015, because of a failed state syndrome under Dictator   Yaya Jammeh. Gambian youths are not the only refugees fleeing African countries, but they are over-represented, percentage wise, or per capita ( say every 100 families between 18 to 30 years , how many are affected), in all refugee camps in Western Europe. As we go to press, today, there are more Gambians  en route, along the lonely, cut throat trails in the Sahara Desert or  clinging  to dear life on rickety boats, in the unforgiving   seas. Unfortunately   they are all headed to nations currently either in active warfare   like Libya, or in nations hostile to their plight, like Morocco. Gambian youths are fleeing in numbers akin to nations in active civil conflict, like Somalia Eritrea, Yemen, Syria or Iraq. Gambian youths are fleeing because of a combination of issues, political and economic .  In other neighboring   countries like Mali, Senegal, or Ghana, the political situation   is tolerable, so most flee because of economic   reasons.

Gambian youths have finally come to realize that they can no longer survive or live in dignity, or  on  bombastic pronouncements, promises, dreams and new “Visions” alone, from the Kanilai  Dictator, Jammeh. Gambian youths have no freedom of expression, freedom  to start   new businesses, because they cannot   compete with the Fiefdom of Kanilai   (KGI). The junta is openly persecuting certain tribes and families it deems as enemies. The unemployment   rate is going through the roof, and high school drop out rates are  bordering on criminality  The state security apparatus  is over bearing  and suffocating. The army and the paramilitary   Brown Shirts ( Green Boys), and Secret Police   ( NIA), are the biggest   employers, yet they produce nothing ,  and no revenue for the state coffers.

The recent assassination  of Ya  Bintou Jarju, in Manjai by the trigger happy and nervous security shows the level of impunity, when the victim is blamed and accused. The prohibitive cost of living, and the indignity of depending on relatives for food, is another reason why youths are fleeing. As we go to press, the Dalasi continues on a free  fall on the market, with an astounding   exchange rate of $1=D50! The fall has accelerated since Dictator  Jammeh planted his face on the money!! Our national reserves are depleted because of wild and drunken spending on non-productive projects. In twenty years, this  AFPRC  junta has succeeded in destroying all the stable revenue generating institutions they inherited from President Jawara’s administration, PPP. Remember Gamtel, GPTC, GPMB, GPA, Cooperative, SSHFC, etc?

The best determinant, or indicator for a failed state is the direction of the most active population, the youths, or future tax players. Today, Gambian youths are fleeing north, anywhere, but Gambia. This massive exodus must be arrested by a future democratic government,  and that cannot be the AFPRC  junta of Dictator Yaya Jammeh. By all indicators, Gambia under Dictator   Jammeh is a failed state, comparable to war zones, …and that, my friends, is the reason, Youths fleeing Kamikaze style [Babylon or Barr shahh], never to come back.

The enablers will point to a few white elephants as evidence of developments …please show them the death toll as evidence  of their failure   and cost….please share this post on Facebook, and on all platforms. Please join us to bring about and fight for the change   that you are crying for, the change Gambia deserves, to bring back dignity rule of law, equality among all tribes, harmonious and even development.  Please donate or volunteer. It’s time to come out of the closet and invest in your own salvation, because this revolution cannot be outsourced or delegated, you need to be present.

Please come back for more..God Bless. Thank you

Gambians Outraged over Disappearance of Young Gender Activist

March 21, 2015
Reads :1218
Missing Young Gender Activist, Minah Manneh

Missing Young Gender Activist, Minah Manneh

Gambians at home and abroad have taken to social media to vent out their anger over the arrest of gender activist Aminata Manneh. Minah is a 3rd year UTG student and an intern at the American corner, Banjul. She is said to have been abducted by the notorious Gambian spy agency NIA. Reasons for her disappearance have to do with a video she shared on social media of a police officer brutalizing a school girl. It is reported that Minah was on her way to work when she saw a police officer beating a school girl with a long chain. She decided to film the disturbing episode which she shared on social media questioning the duty of the country’s security apparatus. The video became viral within a short time.

The brutal regime of Yahya Jammeh instead of carrying out an investigation and disciplining the officer responsible decided to threaten/abduct the young activist. This is what has outraged Gambians. They have expressed disgust over the action of the security authorities with some calling it a slap in the face of all Gambian youth and vehemently call for her immediate release. “What crime has she committed other than to have helped the police to better themselves by addressing the excesses of this officer beating a child on the street?” charged Madi Jobarteh . “Have the police not created a Complaints Unit? And a Human Rights Unit? And a Child Welfare Unit? And a Community Policing unit? Is Minah’s video not enough and an urgent matter for these units to get very busy to ensure that professionalism and civility characterize all the men and women of the force?” Mr. Jobarteh further queried.

Mr. Sam Phatty based in United States also charged that “Minah is one of our most vibrant members and her passion for promoting the respect of the rights of women and girls shines forth in everything she does. We, therefore, call on the authorities to help us in finding Minah and reuniting her with family, friends and the many people she strives to help each day.”

Pata PJ in Nebraska bluntly put it that “If the Government of the Gambia are so incompetent and insecure to resort to abducting kids and women, time is ripe that it be terminated. ‪Minah’s safety and rights as a person and Gambian must be defended, guaranteed by the State.”

“when will all these aggressions and oppressions against the young people of the Gambia end? When our children are arrested & locked up for exposing the TRUTH, what else can we teach them if not the TRUTH?” lamented Kabiru Musa Darboe based in the U.K. According to some sources Minah may have been scared and went into hiding after receiving series of threats from the vicious spy agency as exiled Gambian Journalist in the U.S Fatou Jaw Manneh indicated in a post on social media “I believe Aminata was scared/threatened and went into hiding. Hope that is true and not being abducted as we fear…If you know of any family member who we can talk to please advise us ASAP. We are here to help. Gambia is in a crisis so we cannot take chances. Let’s be each other’s keeper. May God help us all.”

Episodes of detention without trial are an unending trend in the Gambia. Not long ago a youth activist who use to work at UTG Sait matty Jaw was also abducted and kept in incommunicado for many weeks without trial. He was released but only to be slapped with flimsy charges, charges without merit whatsoever.

Yahya Jammeh who has taken power through the barrel of the gun in 1994 have been ruling the tiny West African country with an iron fist, Roughly 2 weeks ago a young woman was killed by a purported stray bullet while authorities were trying to apprehend the driver of a cab she was in who refused to stop at a check point. The security personnel who fired the shots have since been exonerated and driver finned five thousand dalasis.

Some political commentators have stated that Gambia is at a cross roads and if effective measures are not put in place the country is likely to descend into severe civil strife that may result to ‘collective suicide’ as others put it. As at now the hastags #FreeAminataManneh #FreeMinah has gone viral but as long as the authorities remain tight lipped and no word comes from the missing young gender activist people have all right to put fingers at those entrusted with the affairs of the tiny West African state.

DOZENS OF JAILED GAMBIANS IN LIBYA CALL FOR SUPPORT

March 19, 2015
Reads :1581
GAMBIAN IMMIGRANTS IN ITALY

GAMBIAN IMMIGRANTS IN ITALY

ITALIAN RIOT POLICE

ITALIAN RIOT POLICE

By Sainey MK Marenah

More than dozens of Gambian immigrants currently detained in the Libyan city of Misrata Jail have urgently call for emergency support from the Gambia government and international bodies for their release and subsequent repatriation from the war-torn country of Libya. Scores of Gambians were arrested by the Libyan militia two months ago and thrown into poorly ventilated prison cells. The correspondent who had a rare contact with some of the detainees does not know the reason for their incarceration.

The young men aged between 20 and 35 have been in Misrata jail without access to legal or diplomatic representation for months. They are complaining that condition in prisons are worsening and therefore call for the Gambia government’s intervention. Most of the detainees are on their way to Italian city of Lampedusa where they hope to seek greener pasture.

“I have just been contacted by a group of Gambians in Misrata jail. According to them, they have been languishing in prison for the past two months without representation. The young Gambian men and women are in a very serious and dire condition requesting for help as soon as possible. Could you push the list forwarded to the authorities and/or write a newspaper article to get the attention of the authorities concerned. I have email it to the ministry of foreign affairs two days ago but no reply yet”, a family member of some the detainees told our correspondent vie email, requesting anonymity.

For the benefit of the public and government, here is the list of detainees, their dates of birth and addresses:

Sally Susohoko-Sukuru, 1982; Ebrima Faye-Bakau, 1986; Ousman Kanteh-Banjul, 1988; Foday Jabbie-Jarra Sutukung, 1988; Lamin Keita-Santato, 1988; Sulayman Jabbie-Mballykuta,  1994; Lamin Jagne-Jarreng, 1992; Alpha Ganno-Wellingara,1984; Kawsu Jabbie-Jarra Sutukung, 1981; Madi Jabbie-Libras, 1996; Jammeh Keita-Tankung Kunda, 1988; Bubacarr Kanteh-Bakau, 1972; Momodou Joof-Wellingara, 1994; Sajar Ceesay-Samea Pachunky, 1994; Lamin Saidy-Madiana, 1989; Muhammed Camara-Bundung, 1985; Musa Diko-Gambissara, 1988; Alieu Lowe-Nema Kunku, 1989; Sankung Ceesay-Dampha Kunda, 1990; Babucarr Touray-Cha Kunda, 1981; Lamin Bah-Brikama, 1993; Lamin Dahaba-Niani Banni, 1986; Korka Jallow-Foni Bondally, 1986 Amadou Jallow-Banjul, 1992; Yusupha Jabbie-Librass, 1986 Sheikh Tijan Sillah-Banjul, 1987; Bafoday Saidy-Busumbala, 1990; Ousman Jarju-Bakau, 1986; Nuha Sanneh-Kiang, 1996;  Muhammed Saidy-Bundung, 1988;  Ebrima Jabbie-Basse, 1986;  Yamadou Jawla-Basse, 1985;  Lamin Ceesay-Badibou, 1981;  Kebba Saidy-Tanjeh, 1980; Yankuba Gagigo-Brikama, 1985; Ousman Manku-Faji Kunda, 1987;  Mamadi Gabbidon-Banjul, 1981 and Assan Jallow-Banjul, 1992.

African Immigrants protest for Better Lives in Italy

Meanwhile, scores of illegal immigrants including Gambians on Monday protested to Italian authorities at the Isola Camp in Calabaria region of Italy over poor living conditions at the camp and slow process of seeking asylum. The protest was peaceful but riot police were seen mounting strategic location at the protest site with riots gears. The immigrants are complaining about the worsening health conditions at the camp and high rate of refusal of permit to stay in Italy.

Sources at the Protest site say after a closed- door meeting between representatives of the Protestors with Immigration police Commander of Calabria Region, the immigrants halt the protest but threaten to continue if their demands are not met.

YOUR ABC AND 123 OF GAMBIAN POLITICAL ECONOMY

March 19, 2015
Reads :425
SARJO BAYANG

SARJO BAYANG

GAMBIA'S POLITICAL WHORE

GAMBIA’S POLITICAL WHORE

Series by Sarjo Bayang

Understanding of relationship between the economy, politics and society is crucial to making those governing accountable to the general public as key stakeholders. Everyone is affected in vast ways about economic and political conditions of a country. This is true about Gambia also.

For that reason alone and much more, those who take up the crucial task of custody over public resources are under obligation to tell the rest of society how by use of resources the economic engine spins around. It does not stop there though. As the economic engine is set in functioning operation, exchange takes place involving money, material, and human capital combined in the process of wealth creation. In principle everyone must have fair share on account of even distribution any value added resulting from the combined use of resources that keeps a nation move on. The platform of that interplay is better known as economic superstructure.

Within time intervals any government of the day serves as custodian of public resources and by such occasion remains operator of the economic engine that spins around to keep the superstructure in functional motion.

Head of state and ruling party of the day can only be temporal custodian of public resources and not having any right to claim permanent ownership over what belongs to everyone. True accountability is not all about ensuring fair and even distribution of the public cake. Ruling party of the day must be accounted for promises made during elections and also when the head of government is sworn in to take up duty occasioned by official ceremony.

People outside of government constituting taxpayers have a stake in governance and distribution of public resources. Everyone has equal rights to put those in charge of public resources under scrutiny. People are free to ask critical question in order to ascertain what is happening behind closed doors for those keeping custody of shared resources.

Political parties outside of government are in principle governments-in-waiting. They have both right and duty to scrutinise any sitting government of the day as way of safeguarding best public interest.

By equal measure, when any political party outside government wins election to take the task of governance they become responsible to the people and required to exercise full tolerance for critical questioning from the general public.

Is that what is happening in Gambia?  If not how do you hold those keeping custody of public resources including president as chief custodian of rules, policy, regulations, finance, and human capital of the nation?  Are things being done the right way? How can things be done differently and much better for best shared interests of all stakeholders? Are people being consulted in matters of public affairs?  Does political power means the office holder owns public resources?

These and other matters of pertinence to affairs of a state will be treated in series. Your reaction is welcome.

FGM SUMMIT HELD IN BIRMINGHAM

March 19, 2015
Reads :388
NO TO FGM

NO TO FGM

SARATA JABBI

SARATA JABBI

By Sarata Jabbi

Campaign for an end to a harmful traditional practice called Female Genital Mutilation/Circumcision, (FGM/C) is on increase on daily basis in the UK. According the world health organisation FGM/C comprises all procedures involving partial or total removal of the external female genitalia or other injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons.

During the weekend the Muslim Women Network UK (MWNUK), in partnership with St Alban’s Academy, FORWARD (Foundation for Women’s Health Research and Development) UK, and the West Midlands Police organised a Summit on FGM at St Alban’s Academy, Highgate Birmingham. The aim of Summit was to bring together survivor communities and practitioners, to identify gaps in service provision, share knowledge, and establish Birmingham as a leading hub for modelling best practice by engaging schools, practitioners and parents in fight against FGM.

In her welcoming remark the Executive Director of the MWNUK, Faeeza Vaid, described the event as an important landmark event for Birmingham in highlighting FGM, and bringing together multiple agencies. Ms Vaid went on to say that only by working collaboratively will they be able to end FGM in a generation. Over 137,000 girls and women living in England and Wales have been affected by FGM and 130 million girls and women experienced some form of FGM globally, revealed Ms Vaid.

On the way that Birmingham can make a difference in tackling FGM, Shabana Mahmood, MP, Shadow Treasury minister and MP Ladywood Nechells called on all residents regardless of race or colour to work together in raising awareness on the effects of FGM, adding that men should equally join the struggle and become champions by making sure that the world become free of FGM.

Other speakers include Alison Byrne FGM specialist-Heartland hospital, Gillian Squires Child Protection Unit, West Midlands Police, Hazel Pulley and Vanessa Diakides, who all spoke at length on the safeguarding, health and law aspect of FGM as well as the importance of the raising awareness in schools, and communities across Birmingham.

Imam Ahmed Johari and Father Nicholas lo Polito both strongly argues that FGM is harmful to human body, and neither the Bible nor the Qur’an gives anyone the right to harm another person. The summit was attended by health professionals, police, teachers, survivors, students, faith leaders, and community groups.