OJ Renews Call For Release Of Coup Plotters’ Relatives


By Abdoulie John

Gambian opposition leader has urged President Yahya Jammeh to release
relatives of suspected coup plotters who are being held in custody for over two months.

“The government cannot use collective punishment to attack family members of people suspected to be linked with the failed coup. Those arrested should be released,” Omar Amadou Jallow of the opposition People’s Progressive Party (PPP) told this reporter.

Following the December 30th abortive putsch, security forces rounded up dozens of military and civilians. The arrest of dozens of civilians, including Meta Njie, the mother of the coup leader, had caused widespread fear amongst Gambians. 

Mr. Jallow said there is really no rational in such reprisals against civilian populations and individuals who are related to State House’s attackers. “Did Yahya Jammeh and his associates seek permission from their parents as to whether or not they should carry out anilitary coup in 1994?”

The PPP leader described their continued detention as arbitrary, and said it poses grave alarm to the country’s human rights record.

Gambian authorities continue to turn a deaf ear to calls made by various human rights organizations to either charge or release family members of people suspected to be linked with December 2014 foiled coup.

In the aftermath of the coup, President Jammeh warned to make “an example” out of the coup plotters. “I will be happy if they (the coup plotters) are gone to hell,” he told State-owned TV.


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