‘Tamba Mansary told NIA officers to give me vinegar to eliminate me’

Monday, February 04, 2019

Fatou Camara, UDP chairperson at Ebo Town Ward, on the 30th January, 2019, said before Justice Kumba Sillah-Camara of the High Court in Banjul that Tamba Mansary told NIA officers to give her vinegar to eliminate her. She was continuing her testimony in the case involving Yankuba Badjie and other NIA officers.

When the case resumed, Lawyer Antouman Gaye rose and told the court that he was representing the state along with Lamin S. Camara, Yassin Senghore, Combeh Gaye and Counsel Mendy. Counsels Mene, Jalow, Suso and Dago announced their representation for the defence.

Fatou Camara told the court that when she was taken out by someone who was speaking Manjango, her head and eyes were tied with a piece of cloth by another man whom she could not identify. She stated that she did not know the type of piece of cloth the man used to tie her eyes.

She adduced that the man lifted her and took her to another room and was made to lie down on something which was cold, adding that she was told that she was taken to the room to speak the truth. She revealed that she was told to open her mouth but she refused, further saying that she heard somebody call Haruna and ordered him to bring a pipe because she did not want to speak, and she thought about death.

She disclosed that they tied her hands and she was beaten up, noting that she could not describe what was used to beat her but she heard the man telling Haruna to bring the pipe. She said that she could not tell how many people were beating her but they were many, adding that she was beaten all over her body and eyes, and they threw her out when she was exhausted. She testified that she could not tell how long they beat her.

She told the court that she was unconscious, indicating that she knew that there were grasses when she gained consciousness. She stated that they poured cold water on her where she was thrown, noting that she was trying to take off the piece of cloth which was tied on her eyes but she could not. She went on to say that they continued beating her as she called out God’s name.

She further narrated that she had injuries on her hands as a result of the beating, disclosing that a man came and told them to stop the beating. She said that they finally stopped the beating and she was taken away by the man who intervened.

She indicated that the man took her to another place where she lay on the veranda because of the severe beating, adding that she preferred to die than to live. She narrated that she asked a man who was passing by to give her some water, which he did but she poured the water out. She added that another man came and kicked her on her left side.

Fatou Camara revealed that her back was paining and she had speaking difficulty, noting that she also had eye problem because of the beating. She further said that it was when she went to Senegal for treatment that she was given glasses to wear.

She told the court that after she was kicked by the man, she managed to take off the piece of cloth from her eyes. She testified that she was taken to another room where she found a long table and some people, and that she was dizzy. She adduced that there was a video camera which was used to film her along with Fatoumata Jawara, who was also tired.

She noted that she was again called by a man who told her to speak the truth, stating that after she regained consciousness, she told them that she was going to attend a wedding ceremony. She said that she was again taken to a small room where Nogoi Njie and Fatoumata Jawara found her, further narrating that they all suffered but Nogoi Njie was physically stronger than they were.

She disclosed that she became unconscious again, adding that when she regained consciousness, Nogoi Njie told her that there was a doctor.  She adduced that she was taken to another room before she saw the doctor, noting that there were four beds in the room and there was another room adjacent to the room where she was. She testified further that she then asked Nogoi Njie what happened.

She stated that she was crying and Nogoi Njie told her to keep quiet, disclosing that the doctor, who was called Doctor Sanyang, wanted to treat her but she told him that she did not trust them.”I heard that they used to inject people and they died there,” she said.  She told the court that blood oozed from her for 15 days when she was urinating, narrating that a nurse came and one Fatou Darboe, who was brought by Sergeant Jeng, also came.

She revealed further that she told Fatou Darboe that someone offered to treat her but she refused and then told her that she should be sympathetic to her because she is a woman, stating that Fatou Darboe gave her some medication. She went on to say that she was then taken to another room along with Fatoumata Jawara and Nogoi Njie, noting that she spent over 20 days at the NIA.

Hearing continues on the 11th February, 2019.    

Author: Dawda Faye