|Ex-convicts "pardoned" by the Gambian dictator|
The ex-convicts pardoned by the Gambian dictator, Yaya Jammeh, are seen here matching in the Banjul City Square to show their appreciation to the person who concocted charges against most of them or were jailed for several years without charge.
As a close collaborator said to me recently , "they say it is GOD that took them to Mile II" - the notorious prison facility that is listed as one of the worst in the world - "how come they are praising Jammeh for their release" instead of God.
Our response is: remember most of these "pardoned prisoners" were members of the repressive security apparatus that has kept the dictatorship in power for 21 years by carrying out atrocities against a defenseless civilian population. They were responsible for the maiming, killing, forced disappearances, extra-judicial executions, raping and torturing of many Gambians and non-Gambians alike to instill fear in a country where FEAR RULES, according to Amnesty International.
To complete the "humiliation parade", Jammeh will force them to spend the rest of the rainy season at his home village farm of Kanilai where they will be used as indentured laborers. What a shame.