#Article (Archive)

An Important Voice in Chorus of Disapproval

Jan 29, 2009, 4:38 AM

We join with Alhagie Momodou Lamin Touray, the president of The Gambia Supreme Islamic Council, who has added his voice to the growing chorus condemning the acts of rape and murder in the country. Many people fear that the instances of these terrible crimes are on the increase as we hear about them far more easily in this modern age of mass communication and media coverage. It is difficult to say whether the instance is actually increasing or whether we are now just hearing about this problem where we did not before. As mentioned the media certainly has a role to play as it disseminates the facts of the various cases that appear in court or come to the attention of the police but there is also a wider issue of societal openness. In years gone by if a girl was raped then a family might have thought it shameful and kept it a secret. This meant that very often the perpetrators of these terrible crimes acted with impunity and went unpunished. Thankfully this has changed and the more openly we as a society condemn this terrible act then hopefully the less the perpetrators will feel they can get away with it.

In recent times very strong messages on the subject have been delivered by President Jammeh who expressed his own intolerance for rape and murder. We are thankful that Alhagie Momodou Lamin Touray has also spoken openly on this topic in recent days. These are moral issues and in moral issues we look to our religious leaders for guidance. Imam Touray described the acts as ungodly, inhuman and criminal.

According to him, it is criminal by nature to be involved in such acts. He called for attitudinal change in society and the need for people demonstrate sympathy to one another to make the world a better place. "It is barbaric, outdated, redundant, stupid and animalistic to involve yourself in rape or murder. How can one be committing such heinous crimes without any hesitation," he questioned.

We ask the same question and agree with all the above statements. We also pray that change is coming and that soon we in the media will have no examples of these terrible crimes to report to our readers.

"Crime expands according to our willingness to put up with it."

Barry Farber