By Mustapha Jallow
Babanding Yarbo, residing at Kiang Bambako in the Lower River Region (LRR), who was reported arrested by the Police Intervention Unit (PIU) on Monday, 9 May 2016, is still being held incommunicado, according to his wife.
Mrs. Kala Sonko, the wife of Mr. Yarbo, told this reporter yesterday (16 June) that her husband who went missing on that fateful day has now been traced to Janjangbureh prison in the Central River region (CRR) but that the family is not allowed access to see him.
She said when the family heard that some UDP supporters who were also arrested are to be arraigned at the court in Mansakonko, some family members went there to see him and to find out why he was held.
“Unfortunately, when they went to Mansakonko to see whether my husband will be brought there they could not find him,” she explained.
Mr. Yarbo’s wife further explained that the family also heard again that the UDP supporters were to be taken to the Kanifing court and that when they went there and stayed the whole day waiting for him, he did not turn up.
“My husband is very supportive to the family and his absence for more than a month now is seriously affecting the entire family, especially our mentally ill son, who is entirely being taken care of by his father,” said the distraught mother.
She said the condition of their son is getting worse as the father who used to see to it that the boy takes his medication regularly is not around now.
“It’s too much on my head now with my husband being detained without having to access him and our son being mentally disturbed and in need of support from his father who is not around. I do regularly have sleepless thoughts because of these problems,” she lamented.
Mr. Yarbo’s disappearance was first reported to this medium by his son, Omar Yarbo, who confirmed that he last spoke to him on phone on that very day he was picked up around Westfield by the PIU.
“I was talking to him on the phone when he told me that he will soon reach Westfield when the communication cut off. I tried to connect to him with several unsuccessful calls but his phone was repeatedly telling me ‘the number you have dialed is switched off, please try again later,” said the son.
Omar explained how his father came down to the Kombo’s the previous day (Sunday) to follow his mentally ill brother, Bakary Yarbo, who was escorted by the police in Kwinella to the Edward Francis Small Teaching Hospital (EFSTH) for treatment. He said when the father was leaving their home village, he called to inform him that from Banjul he would be visiting him (Omar) at his home in Farato to solicit for financial assistance from him in order to facilitate the treatment of his mentally deranged brother. He said his brother was later referred for admission at the Tanka Tanka psychiatric hospital while his father was trying to come to him when he got arrested.