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Gambia: Jammeh-era victims occupy court complex

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Purported victims of human rights violations under former Gambian President Yahya Jammeh on Tuesday occupied the Supreme Court compound in the capital Banjul, demanding that justice be seen to be served against their perpetrators.The protesters said their occupation of the court grounds was intended as a strong reminder to the new government that they will not waver in their quest for justice over alleged killings, torture and enforced disappearances during 22 years of Jammeh’s rule.

They said after a year of government inaction, their resolve for justice was far from diminished and must be seriously considered if perpetrators of injustices under Jammeh would atone for their actions.

”We simply want justice…his is why we gathered at the highest citadel of the Gambian judiciary to make our voices heard” one Isatou Marong told the African Press Agency.

The Supreme Court occupiers included close relatives of people allegedly killed or maimed by operatives acting on orders from senior members of the erstwhile administration including Jammeh himself.

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With a posse of human rights activists in tow, protesters had earlier marched from the entrance to Banjul to the court complex, waving placards and banners emblazoned with words screaming ‘justice’.

Among them was the Executive Secretary of the newly established Truth Reconciliation and Reparation Commission (TRRC), Baba Galleh Jallow to demonstrate solidarity with the marchers, assuring them of a robust execution of his task.

The TRRC is meant to establish the truth regarding the alleged rash of crimes thought to have been committed under Jammeh’s leadership since he took power in a bloodless coup in 1994.

Its task will be to reconcile Gambians and recommend legal action to right the supposed wrongs of the past.

From: Journal du Cameroun

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