By Nelson Manneh
One Karamo Saidy Fatajo has told Foroyaa that the police have taken away his eleven year daughter and denied him access to her despite all his efforts. The police regard the matter as a case of child abuse and are therefore exercising caution.
The 61 year old man residing in Tallinding on Saturday 6 October 2018, walked into the offices of Foroyaa to explain his situation. Mr. Fatajo said his daughter had a problem with her elder brother Yaya Saidy Fatajo who beat her.
“Yaya Saidy Fatajo is my elder son I gave him the right to take care of the younger ones in my absence. He beat Aminata Saidy Fatajo because she did not go to dara (Arabic School),” he said.
He said the daughter then ran to her brother with whom he shares the same mother, then she was taken to the hospital because she got some ‘minor gash on her arm’. He added that he immediately left the Albert Market in Banjul where he does business and came home, just for the love he has for his daughter.
He said he went to the police and then came home with her. But the following day while he was in the market he was called by his wife, who told him that a police officer came for his daughter and took her to Bundung Police Station. He said he then left the market and went to Bundung Police Station and he was referred to the Serrekunda Police Station.
“I went to Serrekunda Police Station I could not see my daughter still. One Yamundaw a Police Officer at Serrekunda Police Station told me that my daughter is transferred to the Social Welfare Office in SOS, Bakoteh,” he said.
Mr. Fatajo in tears said he then continued to the Social Welfare Office in SOS, Bakoteh but he was told by one officer there that his daughter is there but he will not be able to see her till on Monday 8 October.
“I have no problem with my daughter; she is very young to be in the hands of people whom I don’t know. I am worried and I want to see my daughter,” he said.
Mr. Fatajo said he wants the authority to help him to see his daughter. He said anything that happened to her she will never forgive any one responsible especially the police.
“I don’t know which kind of democracy this is, that I am denied access to see my own daughter. I cannot even say whether she is truly there because I have not seen her,” he said.
According to police sources they have a shelter at SOS where children suspected of being abused are given protection. They regard this case as a case of child abuse and would want to be sure that the child will be in a secure environment before she is handed over to the parents. For the time being they are investigating the matter and are seeking the cooperation of the parents on the matter. They emphasised that the interest and welfare of the child is paramount.