EYEAFRICA TV: Kotu, THE GAMBIA:- As the Gambia’s Truth, Reconciliation and Reparations Commission (TRRC) drew the curtain down on its public hearings, the Lead Counsel of the commission, Essa Faal said Jammeh and those who enabled him must be brought to Justice.
“He (Jammeh) has to pay the price and those who enabled him also have to pay the price,” he said, adding, “Justice must be done, it must be seen to be done.”
According to him, the evidence before the commission appeared to show murders between 220 to 250 that are attributable to Jammeh occurred during his rule.
“Even those who are in denial, if they search deep down they will see that the truth has come out. And the truth is, Jammeh took us on a wild ride for his own self-aggrandizement,” he noted, while recapping the evidence before the TRRC.
To Counsel Faal, Jammeh must be brought to Justice, saying that “if we do not correct the ills of the past, we will be sowing seeds of disasters for the future.”
He said rule of law and strong democratic institutions should be the cornerstone of the recommendations of the TRRC.
“If never again is to be meaningful, it has to be anchored on rule of law, it has to be anchored on strong institutions, it has to be anchored on a discipline society,” he said.
While giving his closing remarks, the chairman of the TRRC, Dr. Lamin J. Sise said testimonies heard from 392 witnesses during 871 days of public hearings brought pain and bewilderment to Gambians.
“During the 871 days, The Gambia and indeed the world heard from 392 witnesses, the majority of whom were victims of atrocities meted out to innocent civilians by the State, its agents or individuals sponsored by both,” he said.
According to Dr. Ceesay, Gambians could not believe that the atrocities they were hearing from witnesses could occur in their country.
“They could not believe that innocent and ordinary citizens and other nationals found in the territorial jurisdiction of The Gambia, many murdered in cold blood, would be victims of the atrocities narrated,” he noted.
He opined that the atrocities committed by Jammeh and his cohorts have achieved the desired effect of instilling fear among the Gambian population.
The truth commission has successfully ended its public hearings of testimonies of the victims and self-confessed perpetrators of human rights violations and abuses that occurred during Jammeh’s 22-year rule.
The commission is expected to produce a report containing the findings and recommendations.
The document that will be submitted to the president by July, will guide the justice and reparation process to ensure national healing.