OPINION: Selective prosecution can’t eliminate tribalism in Gambia

OPINION: Selective prosecution can’t eliminate tribalism in Gambia

Gambia Police Force who are devoid of any purpose and zero functionality are in the news, and yet again, for the wrong reasons.

Late Sunday evening, news started dripping that disgraced former APRC lawmaker Abdoulie Saine has been arrested by the police for his disgusting utterances against “sosseh yi”.

His arrest was preceded by calls for his prosecution by many Gambian microbloggers online. Some are of the view that Lai’s arrest is due to the pressure from those he offended.

Another line being meddled is that Lai Saine's utterances are despicable, but he hadn’t broken any law and there is no basis for his arrest. Had he called for a violent attack against the Mandinkas, then that would constitute a crime. They argued that you cannot legislate for such because it falls under immorality, and if we go down that route, half of the population will be in jail by the end of the year.

Our bent Police Force has again shown their true colours and whose side they are on. Since the dawn of so-called new Gambia, worst things have been said and nobody has been arrested.

We vividly remember the APRC motor convoy being ambushed twice by UDP supporters, yet no one was arrested for it. A couple of months later they got the nerves to arrest GDC supporters for political violence. Thank God, the Ministry of Justice hammered sense in their skulls and they withdrew the case. 

Last year, a famous UDP militant in the USA was advocating for genocide. He asked all Mandinkas to arm themselves and get ready for war with other tribes. He said ethnic minorities in The Gambia should be beheaded, their houses burnt to ashes, some regions should be wiped out clean. A responsible police force would have issued an arrest warrant so that whenever he steps his foot in the country, he can be arrested at any port of entry. But they let that slide.

In May this year, a UDP lady in Dippa Kunda insulted Sarahulehs. She even called them apes. I was told the matter was brought to the attention of the police but they were not interested in following up the case. And, just recently Yusupha Jaiteh’s bigoted outburst against the Fulas too was ignored by the police. 

Who are the police working for?

By Saul Sarr

A keen follower of Gambian politics

 

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