Posted by News Express | 14 July 2022 | 272 times
Gambia’s former spy chief and four other ex-intelligence officials have been sentenced to death for the murder of Solo Sandeng, an opponent of ex-President Yahya Jammeh in 2016.
The country has observed moratorium on death penalty since 2018; so, the sentences handed down by Gambia’s high court will be converted to life imprisonment.
The court gave the sentences late on Wednesday against Yankuba Badjie, a former Director-General of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) and four other senior NIA officials.
Two other defendants were acquitted.
The defendants had all denied wrongdoing.
Sandeng, an activist from the opposition United Democratic Party, was arrested at a rally in April 2016, beaten to death and buried in an unmarked grave, witnesses said.
Adama Barrow, representing a coalition of opposition parties, defeated Jammeh in an election later that year.
Jammeh tried to cling to power but eventually fled to Equatorial Guinea under threat of a regional military intervention.
Barrow’s government has said it will prosecute Jammeh and others for killings, rapes and other crimes committed during his 1994 to 2017 rule, in line with recommendations by a truth and reconciliation commission in 2021.
However, Jammeh remains in exile, and victim groups have complained about slow progress toward prosecutions.
Gambia’s attorney general said in May that the government would work to implement the truth commission’s recommendations on the basis of “clear timelines and measurable outcomes”.
Jammeh has denied allegations of wrongdoing. (Reuters/NAN)
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