Gambia: Nine Gambian Prisoners Allegedly Executed

President Yahya Jammeh has vowed to execute all death row prisoners by mid-September.

Reports from The Gambia over the weekend said the authorities had executed nine prisoners on death row. The alleged executions followed President Yahya Jammeh’s promise to carry out all death sentences by mid-September, Al Jazeera Television said.

It is understood that among those executed were three former soldiers – Sergeant Alieu Bah and Lieutenants Lamin Jarju and Lamin F. Jammeh – who were sentenced to death for attacking the Kartong Military Post in 1997 and attempting to overthrow the government of President Jammeh. Abdoulie Sonko, the alleged ring leader of the Farafenni Army Barracks mutiny in 1996 was also executed.

Amnesty International said it received credible reports that nine people were executed in the night of August 23 and more executions were imminent. A Gambian security source told the AFP news agency that all 47 death row prisoners had on August 23 night been transferred to one place, but he and other sources could not confirm the executions.

The President’s office said in a statement late on Friday August 24 that the prisoners on death row had exhausted all their legal rights of appeal as provided by the law. The statement made no reference to the nine alleged executions, but went ahead to clarify that Gambian law was clear on the death penalty. It said all the prisoners had been tried by courts of competence jurisdiction and sentenced to death.

If confirmed, the executions would be first in The Gambia since 27 years. Amnesty International recalled that in a television broadcast on August 20 on the occasion of the Moslem Feast of Eïd al Fitr, President Jammeh announced that all death sentences will be executed by mid-September so that criminals get what they deserve. The announcement was followed by international appeals for the lives of the prisoners to be spared. According to the authorities, of 47 prisoners on death row, 42 are men and the remaining five women.



Posted by on Aug 28 2012. Filed under African News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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