An Open Letter on Momodou Sabally’s Detention

saballyMomodou Sabally Honoured You, Mrs. Fatou Bensouda

An Open Letter on Momodou Sabally’s Detention

From Dida Jallow-Halake in London, UK.

Dear Chief ICC Prosecutor,

I write to bring to your attention the matter of Gambia’s ex-Secretary General and Minister of Presidential Affairs, Momodou Sabally, because this young man is a great Gambian professional and prolific writer.

He is an asset to your nation. Furthermore, he was educated at the new University of The Gambia (UTG) which will, in my humble view, remain President Jammeh’s shinning achievement long after we have all passed into the next world.

I find it incomprehensible that such a gifted young Gambian, whatever his “arrogance attitude” transgressions, should be wasted in a mosquito invested prison cell when he should be nurtured, guided and encouraged to continue contribute to Gambia’s national development.
I write to you, Mrs. Bensouda, because Sabally once wrote about you in a poem praising The Gambia’s women. His poetic and admiring ode to you went like this:-

“Lady of the High Court of the Hague,
Bearer of the Torch of Excellence,
Liver of the Principle of Persistence,
Making the Whole World Fans in Rave”
Will the “Lady of the High Court of the Hague” remain silent while Momodou Sabally suffers and perishes in squalid imprisonment?

Will the “Lady of the High Court of the Hague” remain silent when she is an admired friend of the President of The Gambia?Will the “Lady of the High Court of the Hague” remain silent when a simple telephone call from her might persuade His Excellency the President to order Sabally’s release from captivity?

Will the “Lady of the High Court of the Hague” remain silent when her whole “excellence” and “principled” world-view is based on a firm belief in “Justice”?

Thank You & Long Live Little Gambia & its Sons & Daughters.

Dida Jallow-Halake



  1. Thank you for highlighting the plight of my friend and former classmate, there are a 1001 Momodou Saballys in Gambia today. The system is broken, there is no justice, corrupt and single handedly led by a greedy mad man who does not want to see and one shine in the Gambia.
    Whoever works for him to oppress Gambians will taste his evil ways. We should not be economical with the truth, the one man show is the problem.

  2. A touching reminder to Madam Bensouda Dida, however she will be found wanting sadly.

  3. Thanks for the open letter. The one that needs to be incommunicado is the so-called prof KAH of the UTG. With all the gross Mal-administartion and mismanagement of public funds at nation`s only University. i am convinced that this so-called prof is a ‘sacred cow’

  4. Lafia Touray la Manju

    Kora, Sabally insults mandinkas in The Gambia. The mandinka elders in turn took Alfaatii jaawo against him and now he is dealing with the curse. So you cannot blame anybody for Sabally’s predicament. He brought it on himself.


    • Papa Kumba Loum

      Lafia Touray la Manju, please tell the mandinka elders to do another Alfaati Jaawo for Yahya Babiili Mansa. We are all waiting and praying

      • Papa Kumba Loum

        Lafia, does this Alfaati Jaawo only affect mandinkas who insults other mandinkas?? I hope not. I hope it can take Yahya Jammeh out. He has insulted the mandinkas and everyone else

        • Dida Jallow-Halake (LUNTANGO)

          Papa Loum, I saw an amazing photo of 1995 AFPRC supporters including Koro Ceesay, Ebou Jallow and DUGA’s own Ous Benga at the other place. Why has your photo been brushed out?

  5. Although the boy is young and very talented but he is not intelligent. It is a saying that an intelligent man learn from other people’s mistake but not his own mistake. When the boy took the mantle of his office i.e secretary general, he used his power to punish lot of people silently and in the process some of them lost their jobs. These are people with families. Although those people are still scrapping by but where is sabally today. Moderation in moderation. Why should one be arrogant with yaya jammeh’s position. we have seen people who have laid down their life for yaya jammeh and he end up condemning them to prison. To be arrogant does not pay only humility does.

  6. Lafia, that is Gambia’s problem: 90 per cent have your vindictive mentality. Halifax Jallow-Sallah, for all his faults, will go to jail for other people’s constitutional rights. Whatever he has done, Sabally has legal rights to due process and the rule of law as a Gambian citizen.

  7. Lafia Touray la Manju

    Really Halake??? Who is stopping Sabally or his family from filing a case in Courts then?? It must be that even his uncle has disown him because of his tirades against mandinka. Mind you though, Sabally himself is mandinka.


  8. Lafia E sabaree. My friend made a colossal mistake; we used to talk about Gambian politics while he was at GSU but his positions changed as he started getting closer to graduating.

    I hope young talented Gambians will learn from him.

  9. Dr. Halake, I have lots of respect for you but your latest article about Sabally to be pardon is beyond me. Is he the only one imprison by Yaya Jammeh or isn’t because he is intelligent? What about my uncle who was there well before sabs? or is my uncle and the rest of the prisoners life not worth anything? Please think again

  10. Dida Jallow-Halake (LUNTANGO)

    Dr Fred Smith,

    Thanks for the respect. May I point out, with equal respect, that my writings are numerous about detainees in The Gambia, on this and other mediums. I am sure you will recall my Open Letter to the President on the Mile 2 Nine – which I understand partly led to the shutting down of Daily News. I was active with Amnesty here in London when Halifa was detained on the Witchcraft matter – and he was freed on the same day that the Amnesty Report came out and the “Witchcraft Hunting” news went Global. I have also previously called for the wholesale pardoning of ALL detainees in Mile Two – except convicted murderers, rapists and the seriously violent. It would be absolutely brilliant if President Jammeh were to pardon ALL detainees/prisoners and empty Mile Two. Of course, this is all very disheartening – and tragic for relatives like you – because there is not much hope of such pardoning being forthcoming.

    My sympathies about your uncle.

  11. Lafia Touray la Manju

    Papa Loum, a collaborator from within is always more dangerous than the enemy himself.

    It is always painful when somebody insults you but 1000 times more painful when your own son insults you. This explains Sabally’s case.

    Tell the Fula elders, the Wollof elders, the Aku elders, the mandinka elders and elders of all tribes to join forces against Jammeh. This is what is required.