By Omar Bah
Momodou Malcolm Jallow, a Gambian-Swedish parliamentarian currently on a visit to The Gambia, has added his voice to the growing calls for former President Jammeh and his co-perpetrators to be prosecuted.
“It is always important to investigate and prosecute people that commit crimes against humanity. We have a democratic government and I believe they are capable of conducting the investigations that they need to prosecute Jammeh and his fellow perpetrators,” he said.
Mr Jallow, who is also a renowned human rights activist said he would do all he can to make sure pressure is put on the institutions in The Gambia to ensure that the perpetrators be brought to justice.
“You cannot commit crimes against humanity and you continue to be free and walking in the streets or holding office…that is not fair, that is not justice, that is not due process,” he said.
The current government, he said, is different from the previous government. “This current government is democratic and in a democratic government, you cannot let committers of crime go free. I am quite optimistic the present government has the commitment for that to take place.”
“I will make sure that the stories that are told by the victims are circulated around the world through the platforms and the institutions I am part of so that the world will have the opportunity to hear the stories of these victims. So they will know these stories exist and these victims are still here,” he said.
Meanwhile, the DUGA vice-chair, Pasamba Jow, another strong fighter in the struggle against Jammeh, said the former president must never be pardoned for his crimes. “He must be tried together with his associates who helped him commit those crimes. I believe in reconciliation, but reconciliation can only come when there is justice.
“The only people who can reconcile are the victims and it will be a colossal mistake for anybody in the government or anywhere else to let Jammeh go, that would be met with the stiffest resistance from not only the victims, but DUGA,” he said.
Former President Jammeh, he added, must pay for his crimes, “you cannot kill and violate people’s rights and expect that you will live a happy live.”
He said the country’s judiciary is fully equipped now to try Jammeh, “and I believe we still have his 5-Star Hotel he was using to terrorise Gambians reserved for him.”
“Let us accord him a fair trial that he denied Gambians for 22-years. Allow him to be defended by competent lawyers, because I believe there is enough evidence to prosecute him. He must be prosecuted either in this country or wherever he is. That must be non-negotiable,” he said
He added: “It is absolutely important and paramount that President Barrow and his administration give these victims what they deserve and what they deserve is justice. They cannot be ignored; that would be unacceptable and it would not be tolerated by the victims and Gambians,” he said.