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Armed robbers attack Panchang village

Mar 11, 2014, 10:29 AM | Article By: Bakary Samateh & Ebrima Gillen

The people of Panchang village in the upper Saloum district of the Central River Region on 9 March 2014 awoke to the shock news that armed robbers had attacked two shops in the village, during the night, and got away with a large quantity of money in various currencies, including dalasis, euros and CFA francs.

Confirming the incident to The Point yesterday, police spokesperson ASP David Kujabi said the incident happened on 9 March 2014, between 1 and 2 am, when a group of persons, using a pickup vehicle with an unnumbered licence plate, reportedly attacked two shops in the village and took their safes.

The first shop attacked belongs to one Momodou Bailo Bah, and the attackers fled with his safe containing D107, 000, 40,000 FCFA, and 350 Euros.

The second shop was owned by one Alpha Omar Bah, from whom the robbers seized cash amounting to D100, 000 and 10,000 CFA.

ASP Kujabi added that the attackers are still at large, and the police are appealing to the general public to help bring the culprits to book.

He said the police force will send more men to beef up security in the rural area.

Meanwhile, a resident of the village narrating the incident to The Point said the attackers were men armed with machetes and locally-made guns.

Our source further revealed that it happened on Sunday, and the shops attacked belong to two brothers, Momodou Bailo Bah and Alpha Omar Bah. Money and goods were stolen, but fortunately no one was hurt.

The source said the robbers went round the village firing shots in the air, and controlled the village for hours.

The villagers have reportedly appealed to the government to deploy police in the area, since this is not the first time they were attacked by armed thieves.

“We are appealing to government to send in more armed police to safeguard this village”, said the villagers interviewed by phone.

According to them, the attackers were from the neighbouring border villages in Senegal, and they normally attack the village on “lumo” days (local trade fair days), held once a week at the village market.

It would be recalled that in April 2012, armed men on a Saturday night, after the lumo, attacked and robbed a shop belonging to Alpha Omar Bah in the same village.

At that time, they reportedly went away with one million FCFA. A watchman, Mbarakan Njie, and one Ali Njie were wounded by the robbers and later admitted at the hospital in Banjul.