By Alagie Manneh
The Truth, Reconciliation and Reparations Commission has observed that former president Yahya Jammeh may have even disappeared babies.
Detailing its findings on enforced disappearances under Jammeh, the Commission said it received evidence suggesting that the former leader was also targeting babies.
Although it said that it couldn’t fully authenticate the veracity of the claims, the Commission said they must be investigated.
It recommended the establishment of a taskforce comprising seasoned investigators, medical personnel, social welfare officers and forensic experts and wildlife officers to investigate allegations of: “a. missing babies (the identities of these babies, circumstances of their disappearance and where they disappeared to and by whom) b. the disposal of the bodies and whereabouts. c. to investigate the crocodile ponds in Kanilai in order to determine whether babies and other human remains were disposed or dumped there.”
The Commission found that the former president caused the enforced disappearance of all those who were detained incommunicado, tortured and/or killed by the Junglers.
“Yahya Jammeh used enforced disappearance as a tool and an effective modus operandi to neutralize his critics and perceived enemies by putting them outside the reach of the law,” it said.
It called for further investigations into the fate of missing persons.
“The Commission was able to establish the fate of all disappeared victims except for the following, Modou Lamin Nyassi, Buba (Bubai) Sanyang, Kanyiba Kanyi and Ebrima Manneh (Chief Manneh). There is lack a of knowledge amongst the security forces and those working in the justice sector about the phenomenon of enforced disappearances and recognising how it may be used by the state to silence critics and dissenters,“ the commission said.
The Commission also said that Jammeh used his personal properties as burial places for victims of extrajudicial killings to “hide his crimes”. However, the Commission was unable to discover any human remains in the farms it visited due to the lack of necessary equipment and technology