Gambia’s president Barrow has seen to the release of another set of prisoners who were detained under the regime of Yahya Jammeh.
During his second and official inauguration in Gambia, Barrow stated that he will leave no room for injustice. He also said there and then that he had given orders “for all those detained without trial to be released.”
To that effect about 170 prisoners were released two weeks ago.
Recent report also confirms the release of about 98 persons from the “notorious” Mile 2 prisons.
Prior to his inauguration, a Gambian citizen, Jeng wrote Adama Barrow an open letter titled Justice Delayed Is Justice Denied. In it was contained the request to probe into the disappearance of citizens.
“Your Excellency, it is not outlandish to assert you have taken over from a government which for 22 years has not only disdainfully repressed but orchestrated gruesome killings, tortures, maims, banishment, disappearances, unlawful arrests and incarcerating its vulnerable citizens.”
In the letter Jeng made an illustration with the disappearance and eventual death of Lieutenant Ebou Lowe.
Lt Lowe was a former member of the Gambia Armed Forces. In 2006, he and 30 others were arrested for partaking in a coup plot to oust Jammeh.
He was arrested and detained in Mile 2 Central Prison in Banjul; he was refused visitations even from his family members. Sadly, on the day he was supposed to be released alongside others, he was no where to be found in the prison.
Till date, no clear explanation has been given to the death of the former military man.
President Barrow says that “an appropriate commission will be established to conduct inquiries into their disappearances.” He also says that the attorney general and minister of justice will receive information regarding all those who went missing.
According to Reuters, Rights groups affirm that Jammeh illegally incarcerated his opponents in several detention centers where some of them were tortured, and some others died.
Interior Ministry spokesman Lamin Baba Njie says the “releases are part of the prisons reform agenda”.
Since his inauguration, Barrow vowed to crack down all authoritarian policies set up by former President Jammeh, in the Gambia.
So far, the president has renamed the West African nation in order to avoid religious sentiments. From the “Islamic Republic of Gambia“, he renamed it as “Republic of Gambia”; he reshuffled his cabinet- demoted Jammeh-appointed officials and reinstated recalled ambassadors to their status quo.
President Barrrow has also declared the intention to remain with ICC.