EYEAFRICA TV: Banjul, The Gambia: Former President Yahya Jammeh’s deceits have been brought to fore once again by one of the country’s prominent Imams who said the 1994 military junta leader have intended to indoctrinate religious leaders that the first republic under Jawara was anti-religious.
Testifying before the Truth, Reconciliation and Reparations Commission (TRRC) on Wednesday, Imam Baba Mukhtarr Leigh explained numerous human right violations that were meted out on him during the Jammeh regime.
He said the imams were invited to statehouse, where they were introduced to the council members where Mr Jammeh began his hate speeches.
“Yahya said he do not like the way the nation was being run. He said there was rampant corruption and that was one of the ways he used to deceive the imams during those days. He said one of the reasons he staged a coup was because imams were suffering in the country and they did not have their due. He said the work that imams were doing was better than the job the governors and other high-ranking officers were doing but yet those governors where receiving higher than the Imams.”
Imam Leigh said from this moment, Mr Jammeh managed to convince him and some other religious leaders to share the message with their colleagues within the country.
“We went around and met lot many other imams on a Sunday. Many imams came there and that is the time he decided to narrate to them what he wanted to do and everyone went along with him. In the beginning, a lot of people didn’t refuse him.”
He recalled that his cordial ties with the former president did not last long as he became constantly hunted for his Islamic sermons which were against the feelings of Yahya Jammeh.
The eventual episode between Jammeh and religious leaders featured arrest, and detention of imams including Baba Leigh himself, for their religious duties in the country.
Story written by Juldeh Njie