NIA victim recounts havoc inflicted on him

Feb 3, 2021, 12:01 PM | Article By: Pa Modou Cham

A victim of NIA, Alhagie Lang Ceesay, yesterday testified before the Truth Commission, giving account of his encounter with workers of Kanilai Family Farm, his detention at NIA and tortures.

He recalled that on 12 August 2012, being an ulcer patient, he planned a trip to Dakar for treatment.

According to him, while driving, he saw a vehicle at Abuko. He applied his brake though he was in a hurry to catch up the ferry. He added that during the course, the cattle were also crossing the road.

"The boys from Kanilai Family Farm that were in the vehicle insulted me because they asked me to stop and let the cattle pass. They rushed and beat me with sticks."

"As they were pulling me out of my car, I removed a knife and asked them to stop. I then forced my way out and upon arrival at Banjuliding Police Station; I was stopped, arrested and taken to the Abuko Station."

He added that after having given their statements, the senior officer said it was just a mistake and he reconciled him with them. He said that was the time he left for Dakar.

Mr. Ceesay further testified that upon arrival at the Amdalai Border Post, he overheard an officer who spoke on phone and that officer later told him (Ceesay) that he was ordered to arrest him (Ceesay).

He revealed that he was taken to the NIA and was beaten seriously, with Pa Bojang recording the tortures.

"After the beating, Saul Badjie and Gajaga came from the State House and said the president wanted me to explain the matter. I narrated all the things that happened, and they looked at each other and asked what a traffic case had to do with the NIA and the president's interest in that."

He said that he was kept at NIA detention for 14 days before taken to Abuko Police Station to secure a bail.

He revealed that the information given to Jammeh was that he wanted to stage a coup. According to him, he was told that it was Pa Bojang who reported that to Jammeh.

"I was subsequently taken to court and charged with threat but later fined D1, 000 or serve year in prison. I later left for Senegal after paying the fine and spent six years because there were people who used to come in my house to search for me."