At least seven military men accused of taking part in a coup or conspiring with the attackers of the Gambia’s seat of government on December 30th last year have been appearing before a secret court martial in Fajara Barracks.
The court martial idea was contained in a directive issued by President Yahya Jammeh who had earlier instisted that “no serving Gambian soldier was involved in the failed coup d’etat.”
The soldiers being secretly court martialed are: Lt. Col. Sarjo Jarju, Capt Buba K Bojang, Capt. Buba Sanneh, Capt. Abdoulie Jobe, Lt. Ansumana Sanyang, Lt. Amadou Sowe and Private Modou Njie.
All the accused persons, except Private Njie, were serving the Gambia National Army at the time of their unannounced arrest and detention. In fact, three of the suspects [Lt. Col. Jarju , Lt, Amadou Sowe and Lt. Sanyang] were part of President Jammeh’s personal security detail.
Njie was captured during the failed putsch while four of the attackers, including the alleged mastermind Lt. Col. Lamin Sanneh were killed.
The court, which began sittings this week, is being presided over by a Nigerian judge. Col. Momodou Sowe, the Army Director of Policy and Planning, has been nominated as the court martial President. Col. Sowe had earlier represented the Gambia at the ECOWAS Commission in Nigeria.