Gambia: 22nd July 1994 - 22nd July 2014 - 20 Years of Fear in Gambia
Most basic human rights are; To have a fair and independent trial and not be enslaved by a person or persons.
On 22 July 1994, a group of military officers led by Lieutenant Yahya Jammeh overthrew President Dawda Jawara, who had been in power in Gambia since 1970. Yahya Jammeh, supported by the army, proclaimed himself President of the Republic and, over time, took direct control of the Ministry of Defence and Ministry of Interior.
The Gambian government tolerates no dissent and commits serious human rights violations. Human rights defenders, journalists, political opponents and other Gambians who are critical of government policies continue to face intimidation, harassment, arbitrary arrest, detention, torture, ill-treatment, death threats and enforced disappearance.
Some of the human rights violations recorded over the last 20 years include the killing of 14 protesters in April 2000, the killing of journalist Deyda Hydara in 2004, the enforced disappearance of journalist Ebrima Manneh in 2006, the torture of journalist Musa Saidykhan in 2006, the arbitrary executions of 9 prisoners in 2012, and the "incommunicado" detention of human rights defender Imam Baba Leigh for five months of the same year.
The Gambian government has repeatedly failed to comply with several rulings by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Court of Justice, including refusing to compensate Musa Saidykhan, and the families of Ebrima Manneh and Deyda Hydara.
The justice system has also been weakened since President Yahya Jammeh came to power, undermined by interference by the Executive and increasingly repressive legislation aimed at muzzling dissent.
For example, in April 2013, the National Assembly passed amendments to the Criminal Code increasing sanctions for "giving false information to public servants" (Section 114) from six months imprisonment and/or a fine of 500 Dalasi (approximately US$13) to imprisonment of up to five years and a fine of 50,000 Dalasi (US$1,293).
Further, in July 2013, the National Assembly passed the Information and Communication (Amendment) Act providing that internet users, journalists and bloggers found guilty of spreading false news can be punished by up to 15 years in prison and may be fined up to 3 million dalasi (approximately US$74,690).
In this pervasive climate of fear, most journalists, human rights defenders and citizens are forced to practice self-censorship or to flee the country.
Parents of the abducted Chibok schoolgirls have said that even though it is 98 days since their daughters were abducted from their school by Boko Haram gunmen, they still hoped they would not have to spend 100 days in the captivity of the insurgents, before being rescued. Speaking from Chibok, one of the parents of the abducted girls, Mr Lucky Chibok said he would continue to burn his candle of hope, even though the rescue efforts had at all times tried to quench the flame of optimism that he would ever be reunited with his daughter again.
“As long as I am alive, I will not give up my prayers and my hope that my daughter and her colleagues would one day walk back to Chibok, because that is not beyond the doings of the Almighty God,” said Lucky. He further said that when the news first came to him that his daughter and others had been kidnapped by the Boko Haram sect, it was like a dream.
“If anyone tells us that we would have to wait for over three months, I for one would not believe that the girls could stay alive with these dangerous men without any yielding. But here we are, still waiting and waiting.
“It is our fervent hope that they are rescued at once and for all, without necessarily clocking 100 days of being held in the captivity of the Boko Haram,” he said.
According to fresh revelations the Nigerian army sometimes flee whenever they clash with BoKo Haram beside allegations of collaboration and corruption from the state. As we all know how rampant corruption, extosion and bribery are means of making a living. Is the Nigerian army taking money from a terrorist group and putting the whole of Africa in the hands of deranged, mentally disturbed fellows. I think and believe its about time the Niger goverment comes up with an everlasting solution to this mess whatever that means.
Few questions can be posed, how comes it took this long for the most developed and advanced country in the continent to overcome and destroy group of amateur soldiers like Boko Haram.
The Nigerian military says it has surrounded the location where the abducted schoolgirls are being held from their will. But families are losing hope of seeing their daughters again despite government's efforts since the discovery.
Young girls are still being subject to violence, rape, slavery not to mention force marriage at very young ages across the continent.
These young sisters were kidnapped and rescued, and now attending classes to compensate for those precious days lost. Thanks to the gangs of bandits and the goverments not doing enough to protect young ladies from such harms.
Child trafficking and slavery in the AE
In countries where Camel riding is both a sport and a game, we will all agree that or assume that these countries are deploying adult jokey. This is not the case in the Arab Emirate where the illegal child abuse is taking place in the racing tracks. Children as young as 3 years are the most wanted jokey who are also the potential winners of any race because of their light weight. Remember these poor children were all smuggled in the Arab Emirates by the modern Slave Masters rooming between Africa and Asia. These kids were from countries like Pakistan, Bangladesh, Srilanka, Sudan just to name few. One would always expect the living conditions of a Jokey to be more or less comfortable and maybe even to VIP status in any Western, African or Asian country. But its the opposite in the Arab Emirates, because the young innocent jokey are not being paid nor fed or living in a proper house.
Their masters are the Camel owners like the "royal" family of Saudi watched and enjoyed by the same elite who is turning a blind eye on slavery and child abuse. Imagine you sleep in a tent with no food to eat, the only provision is a tin of biscuits as a camel jokey and the camel you ride swims and trains in a modern gym. These are the few common practices in the Arab Emirates in this flipping twenty first century. More to follow..