By Mustapha K Darboe
The family of the Gambian disappeared journalist Chief Ebrima Manneh have marked 11 years since his disappearance, calling on Gambian authorities to bring his “killers” to justice.
Relatives, friends and family members converged at their family compound in Lamin to recite the holy Quran for a man whose death might have been confirmed but remains never seen by family.
“Some people said he was killed and thrown into a well. Some said he was buried in some place in Kanilai. Nobody came forward as a witness in his case. All those involved have reportedly fled,” Chief’s sister Adama Manneh told The Standard.
“We know that he is dead but we want to know who is behind it and why he was killed. We also want to have a proper burial for him as a Muslim.”
Chief was arrested by plain cloth Gambian officials while he was working at a pro-government newspaper Daily Observer in 2006 and since then never returned.
Following the fall of former president Yahya Jammeh, President Adama Barrow ordered for the release of all political prisoners. Then to Chief’s family’s biggest shock their worst fears were confirmed.
“Each time we think about him, it is like his death is new. We don’t know how to move on. At least if we have seen the body, that will be better,” Adama Manneh added.
The regional ECOWAS court of justice issued a verdict on Chief’s case indicting Gambia government for his disappearances and asking for a compensation of about $100 000.
Previous government led by Jammeh refused to comply with the court ruling but the current administration said they will.
Demba Jawo, Gambia’s communication minister, told The Standard yesterday that they are working on having discussion with Chief”s family on the ECOWAS verdict.
“The justice minister is trying to find time but we will definitely go there. It is part of the plan to hold discussions with the family… It is part of the plan to honor the court judgment,” minister Jawo said.