By Dr. Binneh S. Minteh
The testimony of Baboucarr Mboob before the TRRC was a shocking revelation to most followers of the Atlanta, Georgia based Imam Lamin Gassama and the Gambian community in particular. Mr. Mboob did not only take responsibility for his involvement in extrajudicial executions, but clearly outlined a pictured perfect involvement of Imam Gassama as one of the two Soldiers who intentionally shot and killed Sgt Fafa Nyang under the auspices of Captain Edward Singhateh.
Evidently, the TRRC is indeed bringing to light the realities of our minuscule nation’s dark chapters as the unexpected becomes the expected, shadows are lightened up, and two decades of events behind curtains are becoming public. What a sad tale for our onetime beacon of Peace and Hope!
Perhaps Imam Gassama’s involvement in extrajudicial executions in the Gambia, and his community role as a religious leader who leads congregations in prayers, brings to light some of our challenges and contradictions as a people.
In the midst of the growing fray, what happened on November 10th and 11th, 1994 was an egregious violation of human rights. To ensure that our Never Again campaign is deeply rooted across our communities, those responsible for such heinous crimes must be held fully accountable for their actions, irrespective of their status or role in the community. Imam Gassama must be called to account for his sojourn or journey during the periods of the November 11th, 1994 atrocities.