In the Gambia, the country’s chief of police Yankuba Sonko, a former enabler of the dictator Yahya Jammeh, has been accused of trying to promote a Mandinka, hegemony in the police force at the expense of hardworking and professional police officers, the Freedom Newspaper can reveal. The accusations were made by some disgruntled officers of the force. This followed, the massive transfer of police Chiefs belonging to the Fulani, Wollof, and Jolla tribes respectively—replacing them with Mandinka officers. The latest purging of the aforementioned ethnic groups have sent a shocking waves across the lower and upper echelon of the force.
Former Gambian dictator Yahya Jammeh, was running the country based on tribalism, nepotism, and segregation. As such, officers like Mr. Sonko, were complicit in aiding and abetting the dictator, in his quest to marginalize his own ethic group, called the Mandinkas.
Now that there is a new president, Mr. Sonko, is conspiring with his former co enablers—some of whom have been linked to all sorts of doggy and nefarious activities during Jammeh’s misrule, to reintroduce Jammeh’s style of running a Jolla hegemony government. Wollofs, Fulani, and Jolla officers in the force, who have been manning commanding positions are being replaced with Mandinka officers for no unexplained reasons. None of the replaced officers have abdicated their duties. Their only perceived crime in Sonko’s myopic mind was for them not being Mandinkas. He was doing the same dirty job for the former tyrant Yahya Jammeh.
Blatant tribalism is becoming deep-rooted in this new government. The international community, including the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), should take note of this dangerous phenomenon, which has ravaged West Africa over the years. Tribalism doesn’t pay. It should be discouraged.
The following officers have been replaced by Mandinka officers for no just cause:
Police Commissioner Mamout Jobe, a Wollof, the longest serving police instructor at the police training school in Yundum, has been replaced by a Mandinka officer. Mr. Jobe trained the seemingly “EYE SERVICE” disgraced IGP Sonko, who is today a witting agent of tribal discrimination. We must hasten to add that Mr. Sonko, is not alone in this tribal cleansing taking place at the force. The buck stops at the door steps of the Interior Minister Mai Fatty, since he has woefully failed to disavow such illegal acts. Adama Barrow too should take responsibility. This is not the type of new Gambia, we want to create. Appointments, and transfer of officers should not be based on favoring one tribe to the detriment of the other. Jammeh merely promoting a Jolla hegemony, doesn’t make it right for this administration to practice it. It is not only illegal, but ungodly.
Police Commissioner Demba Sowe, a Fulani, who was in charge of police administration, has been replaced by Abdoulie Sanyang, a former dismissed Mandinka officer. Mr. Sanyang, is not one of the best that the force can brag of—given all the phony stories associated with this charlatan rich officer. Mr. Sanyang, is running businesses on the sideline while working as a cop. Only a Commission of Enquiry can absolve Mr. Sanyang. He needs to explain how he acquired his wealth. He has been living a style which doesn’t commensurate with his earnings. A former poor school teacher, today turned a cop, is one of the richest officers of the force.
Thanks to Interior Minister Mai Fatty, and the Barrow government, Sanyang who was sacked from the force, has been reinstated. This was the officer, accused in some circles of favoring police officers to serve as UN Peacekeepers in exchange for kickback. He also used to oversee the 30% deduction from the Gambian police peacekeepers salaries. The deducted funds were usually handed to Jammeh in the name of “developmental programs.” This new government is not interested in a professional police force. Gambia, do not be surprised if Abdoulie Sanyang is not appointed IGP one day.
Police Commissioner Famara Jallow, a Fulani, who used to be the commander of the police intervention unit (PIU) has been replaced by Omar Darboe, a Mandinka officer. Mr. Jallow, has been transferred to Basse. His successor Omar Darboe, was indicted by the April 10th student Commission of Enquiry. About 14 students were gunned down by the security forces in April of 2000. Mr. Darboe, was a police inspector at the time. He headed the PIU contingent, who were deployed to the Saint Augustine’s High school to repel the protesting students. His men fired live rounds at the school, which created a pandemonium. He was among the indicted officers. Former dictator Yahya Jammeh, even had to use his former Attorney General and Minister of Justice, the late Pap Chey Yassin Secka, to indemnify the likes of Mr. Darboe from any future criminal prosecution.
Police Spokesman David Kujabi, a Jolla, has been replaced by Foday Conta, a Mandinka officer. Mr. Kujabi, has been heading the police Public Relations Office prior to Adama Barrow coming to power. His successor is a Mandinka. Now you tell me Gambia, whether tribalism and nepotism is not being condoned at the force. This kind of trend is dangerous for a nation just emerging from dictatorship to democratic rule.
Prison Commissioner Momodou Jarju, has been replaced by a Mandinka officer. Mr. Jarju, was the Deputy Director of prisons. He was transferred to the Janjangbureh jailhouse, even though, he is an enrolled student at the University of the Gambia. His study leave was even denied.
In The Army
Chief of Defense Staff Ousman Badjie, has been replaced by Masaneh Kinteh, a Mandinka officer. Mr. Badjie is a Jolla. Both Badjie and Masaneh used to be Jammeh enablers. Masaneh’s deputy is Yankuba Drammeh, also a Mandinka.
Turo Jawaneh, is the Commander of the State Guard (presidential guards). He is a Mandinka.
Yahya Drammeh, is Adama Barrow’s Aide De Camp (ADC). Mr. Drammeh, is a Mandinka.
Amadou Bojang, the former Commander of Operations Bulldozer, has been groomed as Essa Tamba’s replacement. Mr. Bojang, is a Mandinka, from Nuimi. He is Tamba’s deputy at the Fajara Barracks (2c). Tamba,is a Jolla.
For those of you, who doesn’t know Amadou Bojang, Mr. Bojang, is a former Jammeh enabler. This was the guy coordinating Jammeh’s illegal vandalization of people’s properties along the Tourism Development Area (TDA). Millions of dollars worth of people’s assets have been bulldozed to the ground by Bojang, and his henchmen.
In our next edition, we will take a look at the Civil Service headed by a Mandinka, in the person of Dawda Fadera. Mr. Fadera, is a former Jammeh enabler. Today, he is also accused of favoring his ethnic group.