Saihou Omar Jeng, alias Sir Jeng, is the current Director of Operations of the National Intelligence Agency. He is a Kaur native who supervised the brutal torture of peaceful opposition protesters, resulting to the murder of Ebrima Solo Sandeng on April 15th. Even vulnerable married women were not spared the torture. These women have had their honour and respect removed. They were beaten to coma while some of them peed blood. Yet the innocent mothers were denied specialist treatment by a government that claims to have championed women’s rights, with its leader bad-mouthing men for mistreating their wives.
Sir Jeng’s name featured on sworn court affidavits as the coordinator of April 14th protesters. In fact, he had signed Solo Sandeng’s death certificate and the government’s reply to defence lawyers’ habeas corpus application, demanding the government to produce Mr. Sandeng.
One of the torture victims, Nogoi Njie recalled Jeng’s role on the night of her torture. In her affidavit, she said, “I held onto NIA officer named Sheikh [Saihou] Omar Jeng, alias Sir Jeng, who was present and asked him to help me so that I won’t get killed and he said to them “leave her alone, I will bring her, you go”. They then left me and waited aside while I sat down at the bottom of the stairs of the said storey building holding onto Sheikh Omar Jeng asking him to help me so that they won’t kill me. He then pulled me up and walked away with me when the said men in mask started shouting out that they will not take this nonsense from Sheikh Omar Jeng and that he should allow them to take me. One of them then took hold of my middle left finger and bent it until it broke. My finger is still swollen and I have not been given any medical treatment for it. One of them then said to me “Will you go or not” and I said “Yes but I am afraid of you”. Another one said “Don’t waste time because a lot more are coming”. That was when they jumped on top of me and tried to remove my clothes and when I resisted they pulled my clothing and tore it removing same from my body. I was left naked except for a short wrapper I wore underneath my clothing.”
Nogoi was taken to another room where she was clobbered like an animal and told “you will cry until your mouth tears up and no one will hear you.” The masked torturers left her whole body “damaged and bleeding.”
Nogoi also attested having massaged badly tortured Solo Sandeng until he fell asleep. But Sandeng was taken for another round of torture resulting to his death. He was left lying on the grass like the way he was born.
Unfortunately, Jeng left out all these vital information on his sworn affidavit. The new Spin Master only wrote that Solo Sandeng died in custody. He failed to answer how and why the opposition activist met his sudden death, though one Dr. Lamin Sanyang attributed it to resuscitation problems.
Sir Jeng is believed to be an interesting character who leads prayers in a Banjul mosque. He is not alone in this double personality of being a nice, pious man in public but a secret sadistic devil in the dark. This is the exact character of Yahya Jammeh. Jeng is said to have hailed from a very good family.
Our ources said Jeng battled for survival in 2006 after he had participated in a brutal torture. He was bailed out by a marabout in Baddibou and had since refused to beat anyone, come rain or thunder.
Whether Saihou Jeng tells the truth or not doesn’t matter in a case that has exposed the Gambia government’s disrespect for human life. Gambians will decide what type of punishment the likes of Jeng deserve in a post-Jammeh Gambia.