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City of Banjul
Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Almamo’s widow accuses Ousman Sonko of rape

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Binta Jamba, widow of former lieutenant Almamo Manneh, has been telling the TRRC how former State Guard commander and former Interior minister Ousman Sonko raped her at least 60 times.

She told the commission the former Jammeh minister began his beastly attitude on her a year after the killing of her husband Almamo at Sting Corner.
In a marathon testimony, she explained how Sonko lured her to State House in his office to sexually abuse her.

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Jamba said: “…After I completed my mourning [of my late husband] I went to work and Sonko asked me to go meet him at State House and I was escorted to his office. He locked his office door and took a briefcase and placed it on the table and told me I want to give you Almamo’s personal belongings. He came over to me and put his hands on my shoulder and kissed me. He got hold of my hand and pulled me and told me to sit on his lap. I was in fear because he locked his door and can kill me or do anything. He decided to pull my skirt and he lowered his belt and pulled his trouser down. He told me to bend down and get hold of the chair. I started crying and he asked why I was crying, behaving like a child. It was then that the phone rang and there was a knock on his door too, so he quickly dressed up and asked me to do same up, too. He wanted to play with me. He forced me to have sex with him. We had a push and pull and I begged him to let me go.”

In another instance, she explained how the former Interior minister, who arrested her husband from their matrimonial home in Old Atlantic, “touched” her breasts and put his hand in her “trouser”.

“He [once] came and found me sitting outside with my children, who ran away after seeing him. They are afraid of him from what they have heard from the TV. He took me inside and put his hands on me and got hold of my wrist, pinching me. He threw me onto my bed. I tightened my wrapper between my legs and asked him to stop. He sat on my bed, took off his trouser and shirt and lay on my bed. He forced himself on me until he had his way, holding my neck telling me do you think I’m not a man? He abused me. He abused me seriously. He sexually abused me. He had sex with me. It was rape. This went on for a year and some months.”

The killing of Almamo
Jamba also narrated how her husband was allegedly killed in a shoot-out in 2000.
She recalled a visit at State House and said Almamo was “very angry” on the day because of attempts to tarnish his name.

She said after Almamo was arrested from their home and after several attempts to establish his whereabout and reasons for his arrest, they were told by president Jammeh via phone to “listen to the news”.

“I heard on the news Almamo and Landing Sanneh, former State Guard commander, wanted to overthrow Jammeh’s government but that Almamo was caught at Sting Corner and during a shootout lost his life.”
She also recalled one incident when how Ousman Sonko almost beat her to death.

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