Ex Gambian dictator Yahya Jammeh has used pensioners’ funds to compensate the families of Ghanaians who were killed in Gambia in 2005, Jammeh’s one-time secretary-general told the Commission of Inquiry probing the former ruler.
Dr. Njogu Bah told the Commission that the autocratic ruler has used $500,000 of pensioners’ funds to compensate Ghanaians allegedly killed in Gambia by his agents, who thought the men were mercenaries.
In 2005, 40 Ghanaian immigrants found in the Gambian coastal villages of Brufut and Ghana Town (named for its predominantly Ghanaian population), were reportedly murdered by Gambian authorities.
Since then, some reported confessions of his former military aides have indicated that Jammeh himself ordered the hit, suspecting the immigrants to be mercenaries sent to dislodge him.
The incident caused a huge diplomatic rift between the two West African countries, prompting Ghanaian authorities to seek an explanation from Banjul but nothing of substance was forthcoming.
However, it has now come to light that Banjul has in fact compensated the families of the murdered Ghanaians, only that it was from poor pensioners’ funds.
Jammeh ruled the country with an iron fist – imprisoning critics and political opponents. Human rights organizations accused him and his security forces of torture, enforced disappearances and extrajudicial executions.