By Mafugi Ceesay
The leader of the United Democratic Party yesterday recounted in harrowing details the many atrocities committed against him and his supporters throughout the 22 years of the Jammeh regime.
Called to testify on the September 1996 ambush on his party during the election campaign that year, Darboe said he had reliable information from victims of that incident that prominent AFPRC junta members Yankuba Touray and Edward Singhatey participated in the horrendous torture of his supporters.
He revealed that as a result of that torture Kebuteh Jafuneh, a drummer later died.
Darboe further alleged that Yankuba Touray had threatened to burn him after the 1996 election campaign and he was sure he would have been burnt had he been caught up in that ambush.
He said Yankuba Touray, who alongside his AFPRC junta members had resigned from the army was still putting on uniform during all these times, adding that he and Yahya Jammeh are collectively responsible for the torture of his supporters.
Darboe recalled reporting these attacks to the then electoral body, the PIEC but nothing came out of it. He also recalled the arrest of his bodyguard Siaka Sonko who he claimed was arrested and detained whilst they were in Badibbu Kerewan. He said a night before Sonko’s arrest he (Sonko) advised him to change residence but then he refused.
“I heard the commissioner of Kerewan talking on the phone with someone I perceived to be the then IGP FRI Jammeh who told the Commissioner to shoot them if they refuse to remove their campaign slogans of allegations of murder and corruption by the APRC.”
Darboe said he also made many references to the death of former Finance minister Ousman Koro Ceesay in his campaign, calling on the Jammeh regime to investigate his death as well as the alleged stealing of some D3Million by Ebou Jallow.
He said Edward Singhatey was furious about his mentioning of Koro’s death during the campaign and even reported the matter to the PIEC claiming that had nothing to do with election campaign.
“I am accusing the Jammeh government of being accomplices in the death of Ousman Koro Ceesay,” Mr Darboe told the TRRC.
The UDP leader also claimed that he won the 1996 election but it was rigged by the Junta who at some point held the PIEC chairman hostage until after the results were doctored in Jammeh’s favour.