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DLEAG Team Denied Access To Injured Suspect

Ousman Saidybah
Drug Law Enforcement Agency of The Gambia Spokesperson


By Mustapha Ceesay

A visiting team from the Drug Law Enforcement Agency of The Gambia has been denied access to the suspect allegedly injured by its operatives in Brikamaba last month.

 “They just arrived here. I was inside the house when they asked about me. Then I came out to meet them. They claimed to have come from the Drug Law Enforcement Agency. They said they are responsible for addressing such matters at the agency. They said their operatives denied that Sarra had been injured by them but  other people [not specific] injured him. So they [DLEAG team] said their mission was to ask Sarra who really injured him,” Jalamang Jawla, Sarra’s elder brother told Kerr Fatou in a phone interview in the earlier hours of Wednesday morning.

Jawla added that his family has been instructed by the head of his family who is abroad not to grant the DLEAG team’s request.

“I told them that we [family] have nothing to say, until we seek the permission of our stepfather who is the head of the family. At that juncture, I called him [stepfather] who spoke with them, but they could not come to terms.

“He [stepfather] informed them that my family will not speak to you. They [DLEAG team] appealed to us. They said it is their work and they have only come to establish the truth, but I told them that we can’t speak to you because our stepfather has forbidden it,” he explained.

The family source concluded that the team later left but told him to, get back to them, anytime their request is granted.

Contacted for comment, Ousman Saidybah, the spokesperson for the Drug Law Enforcement Agency of The Gambia [DLEAG] has confirmed that his institution set up a team to look into the matter, but the family of the injured suspect was “unwilling” to talk to them.

“What I can confirm as at now after consulting the Director General relative to your inquiry is that Management set up a team to investigate the allegation and unravel the facts surrounding the matter. The team departed for Brikamaba but were, however unable to engage the complainant and his family because they were unwilling to talk to them just as you indicated,” he said.

Meanwhile, the stepfather, the head of the family said to have instructed the family not to speak with the DLEAG team, told this medium why he did so.  

“I told them that the victim and his brother cannot speak to them, because the case involves a legal issue as a result of a serious human rights violation of the victim. I also told them that the DLEAG spokesperson, Ousman Saidybah has confirmed to Kerr Fatou that his office is aware of the event; while stating his agency’s stance towards unlawful conduct by its staff and also gave the agency’s version of the circumstances leading to the arrest of the suspect; after seizing another suspect before him.

“As soon as I mentioned legal issue and serious human rights violation, [name withheld, person speaking on phone with the stepfather] hanged up the phone on me.

“Then I called back and asked Sarra and Jalamang NOT to speak to anyone again without the advice or presence of a legal representative, because of the nature of the case,” he told Kerr Fatou.

The basis of the above development is the allegation that the 24-year-old son of the mentioned family sustained “second degree injury” on his right hand, both heels, buttocks and manhood, according to Bansang hospital records dated 13th and 14th September 2021.

Sources alleged that the DLEAG operatives stationed in Bansang dragged the suspect in the process of arresting him on suspicion of being in possession of suspected Cannabis Sativa.

The matter is being investigated by the country’s human rights commission.


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