Gambian businessman Yusupha Saidy and friend, Customs Officer Buba Ceesay, have been held in incommunicado detentions in the Gambia for a matter that can be best described as a civil contractual dispute, between Mr Saidy and his Turkish business partners. The duo have been arrested and detained for more than a week, at the country’s notorious National Intelligence Agency offices, without charges.
Contrary to reports reported by other media outlets and Radio Kang Kang, that Mr Saidy had scammed millions from a Mauritanian business man; Kibaaro’s sources at the NIA, have confirmed that there was no Mauritanian national involved in the dispute, and there were no millions scammed. The issue relates to a breach of contract in a business transaction between Mr Saidy and his Turkish business partners. Something, which should have been a civil case, for recovery of losses, if the Turkish businessmen had suffered any losses. But the NIA, who have no clue about their roles, as state intelligence agency, have extended that role to sorting out civil and business disputes, often treating the unfortunate parties reported to them, in the same way as suspects of coups and other treasonable crimes.
Furthermore, although the dispute is said to have been between Mr Saidy and his Turkish partners, Mr Ceesay’s only part in the dispute and subsequent arrest and detention is said to have been simply based on his friendship with Mr Saidy. The kind of jungle justice, that is not extant even in North Korea, had become the order of the day in the Gambia under Yahya Jammeh, where people are put in incommunicado detentions for more than a week, simply because of their friendships to persons involved in a civil dispute.
Our sources further hinted that Mr Saidy and Ceesay’s situation was not assisted by the fact that the other party to their business transaction was Turkish nationals. A country, which – due to the Gambia’s international isolation, at present, – is the only friend to the Dictatorship of Yahya Jammeh. As a result, any problem with a Turkish national in the Gambia, at present, is treated as a crime of an unimaginable magnitude; regardless of its nature, whether civil or criminal. This was what is said to have landed the simple business contractual dispute between Mr Saidy and his business partners, at the NIA headquarters instead of the High Court of Banjul.
It is worth noting that both Mr Saidy and Ceesay are from the Mandinka tribes of the Gambia; who President Jammeh, a Jola, had threatened recently to persecute. Kibaaro therefore urges the International Community to keep a close watch on the systematic persecution of the Mandinka people in the Gambia under the dictatorship of Yahya Jammeh. Just this past week, Kibaaro has documented the arbitrary arrest and incommunicado detention of five young Mandinka youths in the Gambia, in the persons of: Sanna Fadera, Momodou Sabally, Lamin Cham, Yusupha Saidy and Buba Ceesay.