The chairman of the TRRC Dr. Lamin J Sise has said ‘terrible crimes of sexual violence’ must be taken seriously, investigated and exposed no matter who committed them.
Speaking at the opening of the 10th session dedicated to the 2009 witch hunting exercise, Sise said the commission is touched by the horrific revelations of sexual abuse inflicted on weak and vulnerable women by officials in the highest ‘echelons of the former government and their subordinates’.
“Several Gambian women who testified during the commissions last sessions on sexual violence revealed that they had been sexually abused during their times working under the Jammeh Government.”
Sise added that sexual violence and sexual slavery are terrible crimes that can shock the human conscience and perpetrators of this “horrendous violence and abuse that not only violated the relevant criminal laws of the land but also stain the moral fibre of the Gambia and cannot and must not escape justice.”
He cited the case of former Congo warlord Bosco Ntaganda “Terminator” who was convicted and sentenced for 30 years at the International Criminal Court for war crimes, saying it he could not escape justice and other perpetrators must also face the same fate.
The commission appealed against stigmatisation and barrage of vilifications from some members of the society “against the brave women” who against all odds came out to recount pains they suffered in silence for so long.