Monday, February 22, 2016

Gambia Bar Association must support the expulsion of Director of Public Prosecution, mercenary judges

History will not be kind to the Gambia Bar Association (GBA) because of its shameful behavior during the 21-year dictatorship of Yaya Jammeh.

The GBA's silence and condescending behavior towards the Jammeh regime has contributed to the current predicament that the country is in where human rights of Gambians are denied, abused and trampled upon by the judiciary.

Some members of the Gambia Bar Association have steadfastly refused to represent cases considered to be political in nature for fear of confronting Yaya Jammeh and his repressive and corrupt regime.

In many countries, it is the lawyers who led the charge against dictatorships that prey on ordinary citizens by defending the rights of the oppressed and those whose basic rights are being systematically abused.

Unfortunately, the same cannot be said of the Gambia with the exception of a few exemplary and conscientious legal minds who have consistent and persistently defended the rights of Gambians, even at great risk to their personal safety especially in cases considered to be political and controversial in nature.

The Gambia Bar Association watched for 21 years while the Gambian dictator filled the Bench with mercenary judges from Nigeria and Cameroon, unleashed against ordinary Gambians who are regularly imprisoned in disproportionate numbers to the small Gambian population.  The GBA continues to watch while the judiciary is transformed into a formidable weapon of suppression by an increasingly unpopular and hated regime.

The Gambia Bar Association must stand up now with the Gambian people and demand the expulsion of all Nigerian mercenary judges, including the Director of Public Prosecution, S. K. Barkum, from The Gambia.  Gambians must not sit and watch from the sidelines while ordinary Gambians are victimized on a regular basis by foreign mercenary judges.  Stand up and be counted while there is still time to correct the wrongs you've committed.  Don't be an accessory to a vile, corrupt and incompetent regime.