By: Kebba AF Touray
The Faraba Banta Commission of Inquiry headed by Commissioner Emmanuel Joof, has issued a press release informing the general public, that the Commission has concluded its work on Monday 27th August 2018 and the report containing their findings and recommendations, has been printed and will be officially handed over to the President, which announcement will come from the Office of the President.
It could be recalled that President Adama Barrow instituted an Independent Commission of Inquiry on 1st July 2018 and appointed Emmanuel Daniel Joof, Neneh MC Cham, Abdoulie Colley, Omar Cham and Yusupha Jallow, as Commissioners and Charles Njai as Secretary to the Commission, to investigate the tragic events that took place in Faraba Banta on 18th June 2018, leading to the loss of lives of three civilians, and injuring several others including Police Intervention Unit (PIU) personnel. The setting up of the Commission is to provide recommendations in order to avoid future occurrence of such events in the country and to recommend ways of improving Police duties on crowd control.
According to the Press Release, the Commission conducted sittings at the Atlantic Hotel in Banjul and visited the scene of the horrendous event in Faraba Banta. The Commission also conducted field visits to Sanyang and Gunjur respectively. A total of eighty five witnesses testified before the Commission, and members of civil society organizations and individuals, were also interviewed and consulted. The Commission summoned Gambia Radio and Television Services (GRTS) and QTV, to provide DVD and CD video footages of the incident, recorded in Faraba Banta on that fateful day of 18th June 2018, to assist them with their fact finding.
The Commission expressed profound thanks to the people of Faraba Banta, who cooperated with them by voluntarily appearing to give their testimonies of the events that led to the stand-off, and an account of what happened on that fateful day.
“Our gratitude also goes to the people of Sanyang and Gunjur, who welcomed the Commission during its field visits and had frank discussions regarding environmental, land, and other contentious issues affecting their communities and livelihoods,” the release concludes.