EYEAFRICA TV: Banjul, THE GAMBIA: For the first time in the recent history of Justice in The Gambia, an effected community has taken a bold decision to opt for reconciliationm, forgiveness and peace by asking the state to discontinue an ongoing trial.
The community of Faraba has appealed to President for the discontinuance of the prosecution of the officers of the Police Intervention Unit as well as the civilians standing trial for their role(s) in the unfortunate Faraba Banta incident in June 2018.
The Community, through the Alkalo of the village, Mr. Omar Kujabi, wrote a letter to the President, accompanied by a sworn affidavit requesting, among other things, for the withdrawal of criminal charges in the matter ‘‘to promote true reconciliation’’, peace, and stability in the village.
In the letter to President the community stated that they were satisfied and appreciative of the responsible leadership demonstrated and acts of compassion that His Excellency, President Adama Barrow and his government had undertaken after the incident, such as the visit by the President to the community in the immediate aftermath of the incident, the setting up of a commission of inquiry and appointment of a coroner as well as his decision to act on the recommendations of the investigative commission, among other gestures.
Based on the foregoing, the president has accordingly accepted to respect and grant the wishes of the community, particularly families of the victims, to immediately withdraw all the charges against the PIU officers and civilian perpetrators concerned.
By the same token, His Excellency, the President has also accepted to lift the suspension meted out on the Director of Geology Department and the Executive Director of National Environment Agency.
It could be noted that The Faraba shooting was an incident in the town of Faraba Banta, The Gambia, that took place on 18 June 2018. During a protest against mining operations, officers of the Gambia Police Force used live ammunition, firing on protesters. Two were killed instantly, with a third dying two days later.