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Group tasks Gambian govt on human rights

By Jimitota Onoyume
PORT HARCOURT— GAMBIAN government has been urged to improve on its human rights record by complying with the African charter on right to liberty, freedom of association and freedom from torture.

At a briefing yesterday in Port Harcourt to mark Gambian’s national holiday, tagged “Freedom day”, a group, Centre for Environment, Human Rights and Development, CEHRD, said the government should use the message in the national holiday to rewrite its history on human rights issues.

It said  the government should grant access to all political prisoners and end intimidation of independent media institutions in the country.

The group, in a statement read by Project Officer on Special Programmes of the body, Mr Otikor Samuel,  advised the government to discontinue what it termed politically motivated trials of people peacefully exercising their freedom of expression, association and assembly.

The group further called for the setting of international commissions of inquiry to investigate among other issues the whereabouts and fate of victims of enforced disappearance and ensure that those behind the violations are brought to book.

According to the statement, President Yayha jammeh’s government in Gambia has cracked down on political freedom and committed widespread human rights violations with total impunity.

“Freedom remains an illusion for most Gambians who live in fear of arbitrary arrest, torture, incommunicado detention, unfair trials, and rape, disappearance and extra judicial executions”.


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