The Committee for the Restoration of Democracy in the Gambia (CORDEG) has condemned a recent crackdown on opposition activists of the United Democratic Party (UDP).
The UDP activists were arrested in Madiana village in Kombo South on February 12 while on a strategy session. CORDEG has come under criticism for its failure to react to the development.
CORDEG blamed the police for arresting the UDP activists who were peacefully engaging in party activities.
“These latest arrests took place against the backdrop of numerous prior blatant violations of the rights of UDP members by the regime, actions meant to cripple the party and stifle its ability to mount a formidable challenge against the Yaya Jammeh rule,” CORDEG wrote.
CORDEG also condemned the recent arrest, detention and torture of Amadou Sanneh, Lasana Jobarteh, Solo Sandeng. “Yaya even recently threaded the dangerous and potentially catastrophic line of tribal politics by singling out the UDP and the Mandinka ethnic group (the ethnicity of the leader of the party leader, Ousainou Darbo) by launching an irrational tirade against the two,” CORDEG said.
“The Gambia constitution allows for freedom of assembly and association. These actions have proven to all that Yaya does not respect these fundamental provisions of the constitution. UDP and all other parties have every right to peacefully conduct party business anyhow they deem fit. No one has any rights to stop any from doing so.”
CORDEG, as a fully constituted body now, CORDEG will not standby and allow these kinds of unconstitutional behavior against any political group, party, or individual to continue. Yaya Jammeh and the APRC are therefore put on notice. All legal means will be employed to address these violations of our constitution. A violation of one is a violation of all is the CORDEG mantra and it will be guided strictly by that principle.