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Gov’t vows to prosecute any public official involved in human trafficking

Sep 2, 2020, 12:40 PM | Article By: Sankulleh Gibril Janko

The minister of Information and Communication Infrastructure, Ebrahim Sillah, in an interview with West Coast Radio on Tuesday said, any public official who is found to be involved in human trafficking will face the full force of the law.

This comes as the repatriation of Gambians in Lebanon still lingers on.

About 38 Gambian ladies have been stranded in Lebanon for months and are yet to be repatriated after numerous efforts from the government to bring them back home.

It is alleged that the Foreign Ministry is dragging the issue because some of the officials from the ministry are involved in the trafficking of some of the stranded girls.

The information minister, however, expressed shock upon hearing the allegation and claimed that was news to him.

He, however, said that the Barrow led government will not condone any illegal activity most especially from public servants.

“That is news to me but I think it is reprehensible for any government official to prey on the innocence of young people and promise them jobs outside only to find themselves in this very difficult situation.

“I know that the government of The Gambia will not take it lightly if we have evidence that public officials are involved in trafficking young girls to the Middle East to be enslaved and to go through this unnecessary hardship,” he stressed.

He said it is good to exercise caution before evidence of the allegations can be proven, acknowledging public officials are sometimes accused wrongly.

 “Notwithstanding if anybody is found to be involved in human trafficking, the laws of this country are very clear, and the government of The Gambia will not take that lightly. We’ll take the appropriate steps to see that the person is prosecuted and where necessary sent to jail,” Sillah said.

He said the allegations will be taken seriously and hopefully the Foreign Ministry and the police will take the necessary measures to further verify the allegations.

He urged the media to come up with any evidence that could be vital in getting to the bottom of the matter.

The Information minister clarified the delay in repatriating the girls as a result of minor legal issues involving some of the girls.

 Minister Sillah said the government has spoken to its counterparts in Beirut to settle the issue.

This reporter is privy to information and can confirm that indeed some of the ladies are involved in some legal issues which make it difficult to have them repatriated.

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