Dear Honourable Minister Jallow,
The TRRC Recommendations Should Be Followed By Accountability!!
When the Truth, Reconciliation and Reparations Commission (TRRC) was launched in 2018, Gambians and the international community celebrated the government’s decision to establish a record of the crimes and abuses of the Yahya Jammeh period. The TRRC provided an opportunity for two hundred and twenty-nine victims of Jammeh’s government to be heard, as well as taking testimony from former government insiders such as ministers, police and intelligence chiefs, and members of the “Junglers” hit squad.
The TRRC hearings, broadcast on radio and television with interpretation into local languages, had a profound impact on Gambian society. Last year, we also welcomed the TRRC recommendations, which called for prosecutions of the crimes committed, as an encouraging first step to ensure that survivors and victims’ families finally get justice and reparations. We applauded the government’s decision to release the report in a public ceremony on 24 December and to make the entire report immediately available on-line.
As the government is working on finalising in the coming weeks the white paper that will provide the roadmap for the implementation of the TRRC recommendations, we would like to raise some of our hopes and concerns.
First of all, we hope that the process followed by your administration to produce this document is inclusive and involves the victims of abuses during Jammeh’s government, as well as civil society. We welcome the national discussion on the TRRC report this week between your department, some civil society and victim-led organisations as an important and encouraging step to ensure inclusion of victims in the process. Victims and affected communities should be consulted and should be able to contribute to the decision-making process, the prioritization and the designing of measures with regards to matters that concern them. In this spirit, we hope you will go beyond the TRRC recommendations and consider the demands of the victims who did not participate in the TRRC hearings, namely regarding sexual and gender based violence.
§ Amnesty International
§ African Network against Extrajudicial Killings and Enforced Disappearances
§ Female Lawyers Association-Gambia
§ The Gender Platform
§ Gambia Press Union
§ Human Rights Watch
§ Institute for Human Rights and Development in Africa
§ International Commission of Jurists
§ Solo Sandeng Foundation
§ The Association of Non-Governmental Organizations in The Gambia
§ Think Young Women
§ The Toufah Foundation
§ Trial International
§ Gambia Center for Victims of Human Rights Violations
§ Women’s Association for Victims’ Empowerment
§ Women in Liberation and Leadership
§ President Adama Barrow
§ Dr. Lamin J. Sise, Chairperson of the TRRC