Below is the text of the letter the Fatajo family wrote to Foroyaa for publication:
On behalf of the Fatajo Kunda family of Batabut Kantora, Sanchaba Sulay Jobe, Badibu Salikenni and elsewhere respectively, we hereby humbly ask the media fraternity and human rights defenders to add their voices and efforts in rescuing Mr. Siaka Fatajo who went missing without trace in a village called Karunorr in Foni Kansala District, since Monday 27th February 2017.
Siaka Fatajo, 52 has 2 wives and 11 children. He is a businessman and an ardent supporter of the opposition coalition and present government. He was born and bred in Batabut Kantora and contributed towards its development. Prior to 2016 presidential elections and according Siaka before his disappearance, at a village meeting summoned by the Alkalo of Batabut Kantorathey were told that since the election was nearing, the meeting was meant to counsel the villagers to vote for APRC in order to preserve prominent positions occupied by some members of the community and voting against Jammeh meant not wishing the village well; and that those who did so would be regarded as bad citizens of the village.
When Adama Barrow was declared the winner of the presidential election, Siaka and his family were involved in two police cases with the villagers due to politics. Siaka left Batabut Kantora on Monday 27th February 2017 before noon to attend a 40 day charity which he was informed of on the 25th day of February, when he initially visited Karunorr Village. This was the last time he was seen or heard from by the family and since then frantic efforts have been made by the family about his whereabouts to no avail.
The matter was first reported at Sibanor and Bwiam police Stations in the first week of the incident and one arrest was made and the guy was later freed. Police used community leaders with the involvement of the Chiefs of Foni Bintang Karanai and Foni Kansala together with some Alkalos, to go to Karunorr and environ, for any information on Siakas. Since then, nothing has been done. After several months of going and coming to the Sibanor Police Station without any result, the matter was brought to the police headquarters in Banjul where we made several trips to ask for the whereabouts of Siaka before meeting the then IGP, who with his senior staff, renewed their commitment in our presence, but to no avail afterwards. On the 27th day of November 2017, after nine months of an unsuccessful outcome, a letter was written and addressed to the Attorney General and Minister of Justice through the Solicitor General and Legal Secretary, informing him of the incident and steps taken in the search for Siaka and requested for their help, but to no avail. About a month ago the matter was lastly reported to the SIS unit of the State House for their intervention, but the outcome is still negative.
All these have culminated into the family’s economic hardship and insecurity, because the head and breadwinner of the family has gone, disappeared without trace for 11 months now. Also, the family doesn’t have faith any more in the institutions we engaged to rescue or recover Siaka, dead or alive, without the personal intervention of HE Adama Barrow.
Therefore due to the foregoing facts and HE Adama Barrow being the principal protector of lives and properties in The Gambia, the family is left with no other option but compelled to ask him to recue or recorver Siaka Fatajo, dead or alive or at least know what had happened to him and demand that justice prevail.
Jainaba Saidy Saikou Maffuge Fatajo
Wife to Siaka Fatajo Cousin to Siaka Fatajo
Batabut Kantora Village Sanchaba Sulay Jobe