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Samusa accuses UDP of assaulting him over alleged foreigner voting

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By Tabora Bojang

Fierce Barrow loyalist Majanko Samusa has accused Sulayman Saho who was contesting the Central Baddibu seat for the UDP of being at the head of a mob that physically assaulted him over claims he facilitated foreigners to vote in the weekend elections.

Samusa who was a nominated National Assembly member in the last parliament, told Star TV that about 10 UDP supporters from Baddibu Salikenni descended on him in Kerr Pateh after he went to the army commander to report the “extreme behaviour of UDP supporters who were stopping people they considered foreigners from voting”.

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Samusa explained that he went to Central Baddibu following receipt of information that the UDP supporters were barring Gambian women from Pallen Fula who are married in Senegal to come and partake in the voting.

“These are Gambians who only went to get married in Senegal. When I heard this information I drove there and upon arriving I found out that most of the youths on the ground are my own nephews. I warned them that they are embarking on a serious endeavour because they have no power to stop any registered person from taking part in the election. I told them that even the IEC doesn’t have that power and they listened and left the scene. When they left I drove to the army camp in Kerr Pateh to lodge a complaint so that the army can send troops to stop their extreme behaviour but while speaking to the army commander, I saw Buba Saho the brother of Sulayman Saho coming with his car with some youths sitting behind. One of them was a journalist and while I was talking to the army commander he was recording me without my consent. I cautioned him and seized his mobile phone and gave it to the army commander. A few moments later, I saw Sulayman Saho arrive and he instantly jumped from his car and scolded me on my chest with two hands. About 10 others jumped from the car and some of them started hitting me with a shoe around my eyes, and the others ran behind and attempted to smack my head with a heavy stone but the army commander intervened and blocked their attempts,” Samusa explained.

Samusa who was a member of parliament in the first and second republics said he could have suffered injuries to his eye and said even the army commander was wounded in the assault.

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According to Samusa, he reported the matter to the Njaba Kunda police who promised to investigate.

“I have the right to go to any constituency. Ousainu Darboe is from Basnsang but his party box was placed in Baddibu and he won. So what is the problem with me visiting anywhere I wanted? I am a Gambian.”

‘Exaggeration’

When contacted, Sulayman Saho explained: “This allegation is not true. It is an exaggeration. This man [Majanko] has been attempting to damage me in any way he can before and during the elections. On the day of the election, he was out in my constituency dissuading people from voting for me. So his attempt to bring in foreigners to vote in Lower Baddibu has failed and that was why he wanted to bring them through Central Baddibu. I was alerted by a brother and arriving there I found him in the midst of some soldiers and that was the time I attempted to move him to a different spot so that we can sort out the problem.”

Saho also alleged that Samusa “stole” a mobile phone from one of his team members during the fracas, adding that it was found with his driver who claimed it was given to him by Samusa.

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