Gambian MP to testify on the killing of Solo Sandeng

Gambian MP to testify on the killing of Solo Sandeng

A Gambian MP, who was tortured for taking part in anti-government protests last year will be testifying against the head of a dreaded disbanded intelligence agency, alleged to have ordered the torture-death of an opposition activist, Ebrima Solo Sandeng.

Fatoumata Jawara, a Member of Parliament for Tallinding was threatened with rape and tortured into a coma after joining Mr. Sandeng in a protest demanding free and fair polls ahead of the presidential elections.

“They took me to one dark place; I cannot tell where I was because my face was covered with my head tie. They undressed me and I was so seriously beaten until I collapsed,” Jawara said in a written affidavit last year, found it court records.

“They called more than 10 fat men inside that room and they asked them to rape me. I told them I don’t know any man but my husband and it would be better for them to kill me. I would rather die. They stopped.”

Jawara was tried and then jailed by former President Yahya Jammeh’s government. She was released after Jammeh was defeated in the December 1 elections and fled the country.

Yankuba Badjie, head of Jammeh’s National Intelligence Agency with his deputy and operations director were charged with Sandeng’s murder and the torture of nearly a dozen others.

Badjie is alleged to have personally presided over many torture sessions at the NIA, in the form of rape, electric shock and severe beatings.

Gambia’s new government is moving fast to clear out Jammeh’s henchmen a few weeks after the end of his 22 years of brutal rule.

President Adama Barrow pledged that his government would not seek vengeance against officials of the former regime, and would instead set up a Truth and Reconciliation Commission to heal wounds of the past.

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