Foroyaa continues to receive press releases from human rights organisations relating to the arrests of protestors at Westfield Junction on Thursday and the UDP leadership and supporters on Saturday.
The Initiative for the Promotion of Democracy and Good Governance has called for the release of UDP protestors on 14 and 16 April, and the production of Solo Sandeng, whether dead or alive. The call is contained in a press release issued after the arrests of the protestors.
The release indicated that the secretary general and party leaders of the United Democratic Party (UDP) Ousainou Darboe along with several executive members were arrested at a peaceful protest on 16 April 2016; while Mr Solo Sandeng and company were arrested during a protest on Thursday 14, April 2016.
“Both protests led by Mr. Solo Sandeng and the UDP executive led by Mr. Ousainou Darboe are not crimes but legitimate exercises of their fundamental human rights as guaranteed by the 1997 Constitution of The Gambia,” the release asserted.
According to the Constitution, Section 25 (1) (d): “Every person shall have the right to freedom to assemble and demonstrate peaceably and without arms.”
The IPDG proceeded to “call on the Gambian authorities to immediately and unconditionally produce Mr. Solo Sandeng whether he is dead or alive and release the rest of all the detainees in order for them to benefit from proper medical treatment where required.”
The release indicated that the Government of The Gambia is expected treat the detainees justly and respect their human rights. It emphasised that, “The Protection of right to life under section 18, Protection of right to personal liberty under section 19 and Protection from inhuman treatment under section 21 are sacred rights guaranteed by the Constitution.”
“No person shall be arrested, detained, tortured or killed arbitrarily,” it added.
In conclusion, IPDG stated: “As The Gambia is in an election year, we expect all and sundry, especially the Government to respect the rule of law with high consideration of the rights of the people who hold divergent views to enjoy their freedom of expression, assembly and association.”