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City of Banjul
Tuesday, October 27, 2020

The truth commission should not spare anybody: justice ought to be seen done

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With Essa Njie

After the adoption of the TRRC bill by the National Assembly, the government under your leadership has expressed desire to foster national reconciliation but also pursue justice for the victims of 22 years of human rights violations under the former government. Indeed, it will be in the best interest of our nation if we reconcile our differences, but we should be bear in mind that a proper and an everlasting reconciliation cannot be fostered if justice is given a blind eye and deaf ear.

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We cannot at any point allow perpetrators to go scot free and the point is no single individual should be spared-those that committed serious crimes like murder and related crimes. The commission must be extended to bring to book all those who aided in one way or the other in perpetuating those crimes. Whether one is a public official at the moment or not; none should be spared in the interest of justice.
Just in the weekend, members of the media fraternity marked the 13th anniversary since the murder of Deyda Hydara by unscrupulous individuals whose names have been revealed according to this medium. The families of Deyda and all other victims need justice to be served. Our nation is at a crossroad and to avoid setting a bad precedence, we must pursue justice.

Mr. President, we have recently heard a statement from the army chief that some soldiers were recruited just for killing. Indeed, this is worrying when the author of this statement was one time army chief in the regime of Jammeh. It should therefore be made clear when and how were such soldiers recruited into the army just to kill. Does he know something about it? Of course, he must have knowledge of it. Was it during his tenure as army chief that such recruitments took place? Was he the one who in fact recruited them? Is he in fact a recruit of them? All these queries need responses. Such individuals must be answerable for the atrocities committed during the brutal 22 year regime of Jammeh. We must not spare anyone for aiding or personally committing crimes. All must come out to tell the truth and face whatever consequences they deserve. Justice must be seen to be done.
Yours in the service of the nation

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