Anger in Gambia Over Move to Free Jammeh Regime’s Hitmen
Relatives of people murdered under the regime of The Gambia’s former ruler Yahya Jammeh say they are outraged that the government plans to release three self-confessed assassins.
Malick Jatta, Omar Jallow and Amadou Badjie were members of a paramilitary unit known as the “Junglers”.
The government said they would be freed soon following their confessions at the country’s truth commission.
“Our team was a hit squad for Yahya Jammeh,” Mr Badjie told the commission.
“We had blind loyalty for Yahya Jammeh,” he added
The three assassins were arrested by military police in 2017, when President Adama Barrow took office after winning elections in December 2016 to end Jammeh’s 22-year rule.
Jammeh initially refused to give up power, but went into exile after regional states sent troops to force him to step down.
Barrow set up the Truth, Reconciliation and Reparations Commission (TRRC) to investigate human rights violations committed during Jammeh’s rule, including extrajudicial killings, torture and arbitrary detention.
Jammeh has refused to cooperate with the commission.
Image copyright AFP Image caption Gambians have long called for investigations into who disappeared under Jammeh’s regime
During hearings about two weeks ago, the assassins accused Jammeh of ordering numerous murders, including the notorious 2013 killings of two US-Gambian businessmen and veteran local journalist Deyda Hydara.