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Sunday, May 9, 2021

NHRC still pursuing Senegalese diplomat’s sex crime

By Alagie Manneh

The National Human Rights Commission has pledged to employ “different mechanisms and strategies” in bringing to book a senior Senegalese diplomat who committed a sex-crime in The Gambia last April.

Lansana Kaba was recalled to Senegal in the wake of the incident, making it difficult for his alleged victim to get justice.

But the NHRC, who is probing the incident after the Child Protection Alliance reported the matter to them, has vowed to follow the case to the bottom.

“Our probe into this matter is still ongoing and we will engage the national human rights body of Senegal if we need to. That is a possibility,” the chairperson of the NHRC, Emmanuel Joof told The Standard yesterday in his office.

“We are going to employ different strategies and mechanisms both in and outside the country, to make sure that justice is served in the matter.”

He said the diplomat was protected by the Vienna Convention on diplomatic relations and efforts to have his immunity waived were unsuccessful.

“On 27 July 2020, the Ministry of Justice wrote the Ministry of Foreign Affairs requesting it to ask the Senegalese government to waive [Mr Kaba’s] immunity or for the Gambia to declare him persona non grata,” Mr Joof said, explaining the efforts that were made in the matter.

Lansana Kaba, 41, allegedly raped the “mentally-challenged” girl, who was reportedly a teenager at the time, in a compound they both resided in the Greater Banjul Area.

His prosecution in The Gambia was first recommended in a May report by police investigators who concluded he took advantage of the young girl.

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