2 PIU officers testify on massacre of 8 Ghanaians

Mar 12, 2021, 10:39 AM | Article By: Pa Modou Cham

Two witnesses of The Gambia Police Intervention Unit (PIU), Oley Sam and Kalilu Jallow yesterday testified before the TRRC, giving account of their role at the Ghana Town PIU base on the massacre of eight Ghanaians on 23 July 2005.

Recollecting the events, Oley said in July 2005, she was posted at the PIU in Brufut Ghana Town. According to her, the morning of 23 July 2005, she was at work and around 1 p.m., they saw an old man who came to the station and informed them about dead bodies.

“We went to the scene and it was around Tanji Forest. Upon arrival, we saw a dead body and after walking for a while, we saw other bodies, with their skulls broken into two. I was very scared and ran to the highway waiting for my colleagues.”

In our first visit, the witness continued that they saw three bodies and another five during their second visit. She said they were there for a long time before the senior officers came.

“After three days, on Monday, another man came and reported that he saw other bodies but I didn’t go to visit because I was afraid. The bodies were buried and it was kept a secret as commanded by our relief commander.”

For his part Kalilu Jallow, explained that he joined the police in 2000 and upon completing his training, he was posted at the Ghana Town PIU. He said he was also at work during the morning of 23 July 2005.

Jallow narrated similar scenario, saying he saw an old man with a bicycle who informed them about dead bodies in the forest.

He stated they went to the scene and later reported the situation to their boss, while adding that they saw broken skull, noticed some bleedings from corpses.

Jallow further testified that his boss told them to return and secure the place until the authorities arrived, saying after their return, they saw another five bodies.

“There was a time I was relaxing and heard late voices which I realised wasn’t normal. I came out and saw the sentry man taking a man to the charge office. I later realised in the morning that the man was taken away and he appeared to me like Ghanaian. The following Monday, we heard a report that there were other dead bodies at the Tanji Bird Reserve and my boss Lamin Camara gave us orders to bury the corpses but I declined. I didn’t know what resulted to their deaths and I realised it was not normal and our relief commander asked us to keep it as secret.”

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