#Article (Archive)

Gambian kidnapped by Senegalese gendarmerie appears in court

Apr 3, 2020, 11:52 AM | Article By: Momodou Jawo

Sulayman Trawally, a native of Garawol Kuta village in the Kantora District of the Upper River Region, who was reportedly shot and kidnapped by the Senegalese gendarmerie, yesterday appeared in a court in Tamba Counda, south Senegal, The Point has been reliably informed.

The Senegalese gendarmerie last month reportedly entered Gambian territory illegally, opened fire in the village and allegedly shot Sulayman Trawally in his hand. Trawally, who is married with three wives, was detained in a prison in Tamba Counda, awaiting trial.

Baba Seedy Trawally, a brother to Sulayman Trawally, who spoke to our reporter in an interview confirmed that his brother (Sulayman Trawally) was arranged in court on Wednesday, saying “one of my younger brothers in Tamba Counda was able to hire a lawyer for (Sulayman Trawally).”

The matter, he went on, has been adjourned to 8 April 2020. “What disappoints me more is the fact that since the incident happened, The Gambia government never issued any statement to condemn the illegal kidnapping of its citizen. I would have expected the government to work closely with their Senegalese counterpart to ensure the safe release of my brother.”

He added: “Even if he had committed serious crime and ran into the country, I thought the Senegalese gendarmerie should have followed the right protocol in arresting him. He didn’t commit any crime. He (Sulayman Trawally) was shot in our compound and the Senegalese gendarmerie in a convoy opened fire at our village, causing panic in the entire village,” he said.   

It could be recalled that last month, Binta Trawally, a sister to Sulayman, who visited him at the hospital where he (Sulayman Trawally) was undergoing medical treatment, described her brother’s situation as “sad” and urged The Gambia government to do everything to facilitate his release.

“When I arrived at the hospital, I found my brother in handcuff with three gendarmeries guarding him. Whatever he wants to do, the officers would be following him. The sad thing is that he was handcuffed in the hospital bed,” she told our reporter through a telephone interview yesterday.

Quizzed as to whether Sulayman Trawally had been charged at the time of her visit, she said the only thing the gendarme officers told her was that Trawally was a drug peddler and that they would jail him.

“In fact to my surprise, the officers said they were going to take him from the hospital while he is still in pain,” she stated. She added that “Sulayman Trawally in his hospital bed told me that the Senegalese officers wanted to jail him for no reasons whatsoever.”