By Almamo Kamaso
“My torturers included former director of National Intelligent Agency (NIA) Daba Marena, and three others: Baba Saho, Foday Barry and Musa Kinteh” Batch Samba Jallow a former teacher and civil servant of the Gambia.
Narrating his ordeal in the hands of these NIA officials on 12th October 1995 before the Truth, Reconciliation and Reparation Commission (TRRC); Jallow who on more than three times broke into tears, narrates that his toes, genitals, fingers and eyes were electrified during interrogations . The pain he under go was very serious and that he remain under that torture for a very long time Jallow said.
“I was picked up from by bedroom in the presence of my wife and children at 4am on the 12 of October 1995 by Daba Marena and co”. He told the TRRC Commissioners that the men used force by dragging him naked on the concrete floor of his home before allowing him to dress up into a waiting white van.
Jallow said on arrival at the NIA offices, Daba Marena placed him on a chair and he was forced to undress. He was given a nasty slap by Marena and he Marena told him that he has to comply otherwise he will be dead.
Then came Baba Saho who said to him you are the people who want to bring the Americans here to kill us but by the time we are done with you; you will never be a man again. He revealed that his captors tied his hands behind him and his legs too were tied in front with electric cables.
“Baba Saho came with a rock and hit me hard on my private part; it’s only Allah that know the kind of pain that was send through my body” Jallow narrates. They lay me on the floor and someone among them came and stamp on my last finger (small) until the bone came out of it. “Today this finger is lifeless” he explains.
After that torture I was taken to Bamba Dinka 2 a very horrible punishment place where one cannot say if you are in the day or night time unless one is taking out.
Later I was transferred to the Fajara Barracks he continued narrating before the TTRC commissioners, where he said he underwent other forms of tortures.
Jallow told the TRRC that at Fajara Barracks their cell was invaded at one point by maggots. Closed by the place where their cell was, he told the TRRC ,there was some thick plastic bags which he suspects these maggots came from after they finished feeding on human bodies. And because where they are kept is so filthy the bad smelt might seem to the maggots like that of dead bodies. When further asked what months that was, Jallow said this was October/ November 1999.
By Almamo Kamaso