Dieng insists justice must happen in Gambia

Nov 19, 2021, 10:51 AM | Article By: Sulayman Waan

Adama Dieng, adviser to the International Criminal Court (ICC) Prosecutor has said that justice must happen in the Gambia as lawyers and human rights activists from The Gambia and beyond suggest that any recommendations by the Gambian Truth, Reconciliation and Reparations Commission (TRRC) for the prosecution of abusive officials be followed by a process of criminal accountability.


 The TRRC unearthed human rights violation committed under former President Yahya Jammeh’s 22-year rule.

The seasoned lawyer was speaking in a video presentation at the International Conference Centre, Bijilo, from his office at the International Criminal Court, Hague.

The Justice Forum-implementation of TRRC Recommendation on Prosecution was organised by The Gambia Bar Association, the Institute for Human Rights and Development (IHRDA), The International Commission of Jurists (ICJ), and International Centre for Transitional Justice. 

The forum aimed to discuss the importance of accountability for the crimes committed during the  period 1994-2017 as well as how and where such prosecution could be carried out.

However, Mr. Dieng recalled that the TRRC had unveiled that former President Yahya Jammeh had maltreated his political opponents and committed murder of Gambians and non-Gambians alike under his regime. In this regard, he said justice must happen in The Gambia.

During the closing of the TRRC public hearings, lead counsel, Essa Faal, now a presidential candidate, said ex- President Jammeh must be taken to the International Criminal Court, saying there was sufficient evidence to prosecute Jammeh and Karim Khan, ICC prosecutor welcomed the remark.

It could be recalled that the TRRC had revealed allegations of extrajudicial killings, disappearance without trace, series of murder cases, rape, detention without trial among other human rights violation cases that occurred under Jammeh’s reign.

The International Criminal Court has the jurisdiction to preside war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity.

However, The ICC legal adviser said if the Gambia government is able or unable to, the ICC would investigate and prosecute perpetrators under its jurisdiction after completion of the TRRC.

Aisha Jammeh, a victim, whose father and aunty were allegedly murdered by former President Jammeh’s killing squad (‘junglers’) said if the TRRC recommended the prosecution of human right violation and perpetrators under the Jammeh administration, any sitting government should implement the recommendations.