By Alhagie Babou Jallow
The National Security Adviser to the President has said the violent clashes between the APRC supporters and some youths in Busumbala will be expeditiously investigated and those found in breach of the law will be dealt with accordingly.
The violence flared last night as the touring APRC convoy was passing through the Kombo North village. At least three people have been grievously injured and hospitalised. Disturbances continued into the morning as youths went on the rampage.
Speaking in Busumbala yesterday, Rtd Gen Momodou Badjie, said forthrightly: “The incident is unfortunate in this new dispensation and whoever are found to be the culprits will be dealt with according to the law. No stone will be left unturned.”
He added: “We don’t need political fracas in this country. Democracy gives all political players the liberty and freedom to operate according to the law and people have to avoid political tension and allow peace to prevail. The situation is of concern to the president and we have already launched an investigation into the matter.”
Young men armed with sticks and stones took over the streets, burnt tires and chanted, “APRC must be banned!”
Senior security officials including the director general of the State Intelligence Services, Deputy Inspector General Mamour Jobe, and the Deputy CDS Yankuba Drammeh, were part of a delegation that visited the imam of Busumbala, Mamadou Bah, to discuss how to restore calm and order in the strife-torn village.
Members of the sub-regional force, Ecomig, arrived to bolster the riot police on the ground. The crowds were eventually encouraged to disperse.
Ousman Jatta, who claimed to be an eyewitness told this newspaper that during the rioting he saw a mob entering the imam’s compound, breaking down the gate and smashing the windscreen and window glasses of his car. He said his wife was also assaulted.
He claimed that at little past midnight, paramilitary personnel intervened and escorted the APRC supporters and allegedly fired live rounds which resulted in injuries.