The fatu Network has received disturbing news that The Gambia’s main opposition leader, Lawyer Ousainou Darboe is now moved to the maximum security wing of mile two prisons. Mr Darboe who is the leader and secretary general of The United Democratic Party (UDP) is now occupying cell number one..a cell that is notoriously known to have housed political prisoners since dictator Yahya Jammeh illegally took power in 1994.
Many of those political prisoner held at cell number one have either died in prison or have come out with severe health problems associated with lack of light and other prevalent inhumane conditions. The cell is said to be small, dirty, damped and infested with cockroaches and rats that compete with inmates for their food. Many Gambians are angry that Mr Darboe who is a senior citizen of The Gambia and who has spent all his life defending human rights, is now being maltreated in such a degrading magnitude.
Under The Gambia’s consititution, Mr. Darboe who is remanded in custody is not supposed to be kept at the maximum securing wing. But as all things Gambian, dictator Jammeh always uses the courts and the prison system to inflict maximum damage and impact on his perceived enemies.
Lawyer Ousainou Darboe and his party executives are expected to once more appear before Justice Ottaba of the special criminal court for a continuation of the bail hearing on Thursday, May 5, 2016. Already, defiance and agitation is growing in Banjul about the maltreatment of The UDP leader and other political prisoners by the dictatorship in The GambiaI.
It is most likely that the more the case keeps lingering in the already compromised court, the more Gambians will also be energized in their resolve to take on a dictatorship already described as one of the world’s most brutal.
Meanwhile, the following people who were arrested by Gambian authorities with Solo Sandeng during a peaceful protest on April 14, 2016 demanding for electoral reforms are still unaccounted for. They are: Nogoi Njie, Fatoumata Jawara, Fatou Camara, Solo Sandeng, Modou Ngum, Kafu Bayo, Ebrima Jabang, Lamin Jabang. Lamin Chakunding Barrow, Momodou Jabbie, Malamin Singhateh and Dembo S. Touray (Touray Darboe) were also arrested on April 16, 2016 at their homes by men in plain clothes and are still unaccounted for.