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Police accused of causing death of a Sierra Leonean national

Ousman Darboe

Dozens of young people have gathered at the Serrakunda Police Station to protest against the death of a Sierra Leonean national Ousman Darboe who they claimed was severely beaten by the police anti-crime unit.

Darboe, a shop owner at the Black Market was reportedly arrested by police anti-crime unit about 13 days ago and released on Friday.

On Tuesday, he was reportedly called back to the anti-crime unit in Bijilo and while there, his friends received a call from him that he was not feeling well.

Darboe’s friend who identified himself as Muhammed told Kerr Fatou that he an asthma patient. When Muhammed and his friends got to him, he was already suffering and they took him to Medicare Clinic in Brububi.

He passed away on Tuesday at 9: 30 according to Muhammed. His friends from the Black Market gathered at the police station near the Serrakunda market demanding justice for Darboe.

They claimed he was tortured and kept in police custody for 9 days without charge. However, Muhammed told Kerr Fatou that the accusation against Ousman who owns a store at the Black Market was that he bought a stolen good from someone.

Ousman has been in Gambia for 20 years and he left behind 2 young kids and his Gambian wife, said Muhammed.

His remains is currently at the Serrekunda Hospital mortuary.

Meanwhile, an angry mob has burnt down the compound of Gorgi Mboob, the commander of the anti-crime for the alleged role of his officers in the killing of Darboe.

Prior to the incident, the police had issued a press release “calling on the youth to observe calm and restraint”.

They claimed Darboe’s named “came up during investigations into a Breaking and Stealing incident that occurred at Kerr Serign on 14th July 2019”.

“Suspects in the said case confessed selling items stolen from the Kerr Serign incident to Ousman Darboe,” said the police.

“Investigators visited his shop at Serrekunda market where a Flat Screen television, part of the stolen items was recovered in his possession.”

According to the police, Darboe was arrested on 12th July and charged with receiving of stolen properties contrary to the laws of the Gambia.

Then on Monday the 15th of July, he was granted bail but he kept on reporting on bail.

The police confirmed that Darboe during his detention was said to be an Asthma patient as shown by medical papers tendered by his family which prompted his bail.

“The Inspector General’s Office assures the public that it will continue a probe into the death of Ousman Darboe and the outcome will be duly communicated to ascertain the cause of death,” said a statement from the police.

This is the second incident of death allegedly caused by police in less than a month. About two months ago, a University student call Kebba Secka was allegedly stabbed to death by a police officer who is currently charged with murder.

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