At least 20 Gambians were recently deported by the authorities in the Gulf state of Qatar, after their arrest by police in Doha, The Alkamba Times (TAT) can report.

The 20 deportees who arrived Wednesday evening in Banjul were among 33 arrested in Doha a fortnight ago by the Qatari police.

” We were in our room one fine day brewing Attaya and we heard a bang on our door. When we opened, we saw police officers who arrested 33 of us without telling us the motive behind the raid,” one of those arrested and deported back to The Gambia, via Ethiopia and Ghana, told TAT.

According to other sources who spoke to TAT, during their two weeks of detention they were subjected to inhuman and degrading treatment by Qatari officers at the detention center.

TAT learned that those arrested are with valid residential permits to stay legally in Doha, meaning they were living there legally.

Meanwhile, our source said Gambian Embassy officials were contacted by the detained Gambians for help, but the ambassador failed to show up and did not send someone who could help.

Ousman Touray, a young Gambian, who shared the same flight with the deportees told TAT:

“This is nothing, but shame on us. Little Qatar can pick up Gambians defying all rules from detention to deportation. The Gambian Ambassador in Qatar must be responsible enough to do his job. African leaders must wake up from their slumbers and face the world with authority.”

Qatar and The Gambia began diplomatic relations in 1978 through non-resident representation, which was developed later with the opening of embassies in each country.

in 2019, President Barrow visit Qatar and countries have signed many agreements and MoUs, including agreements in the field of the labor force, maritime navigation, the avoidance of double taxation, and the prevention of fiscal evasion related to income taxes, and air services.

Also an MoU concerning the development of cooperation relations between the two countries in all educational and scientific fields, and in the fields of higher education, scientific research, and technology through universities and institutions in both countries.

Also an agreement for economic, cultural, commercial, and technical cooperation, as well as an agreement on the promotion and mutual protection of investments, and a twinning arrangement between Doha Municipality and Banjul City Municipality; and, an MoU between the foreign ministries of the two countries.

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Mr. Sainey M.K. Marenah is a Prominent Gambian journalist, founding editor The Alkamba Times and formerly head of communications at the Constitutional Review Commission (CRC) and Communications and PR Consultant for The Gambia Pilot Program, under Gamworks. Mr. Marenah served as the Social media Strategist and Editor at Gambia Radio and Television Services. He is also the Banjul Correspondent for Voice of America Radio. Sainey is a human rights and developmental journalist who has carved a strong niche particularly in new media environments in the Gambian media industry. Mr. Marenah began his career as a junior reporter with the Point Newspaper in the Gambia in 2008 and rose through the ranks to become Chief correspondent before moving to The Standard Newspaper also in Banjul as Editorial Assistant and head of News. He is a household name in the Gambia’s media industry having covered some of the most important stories in the former and current government. These include the high profile treason cases including the Trial of Former military chiefs in Banjul in 2009 to 2012. Following his arrest and imprisonment by the former regime of President, Yahya Jammeh in 2014, Marenah moved to Dakar Senegal where he continues to practice Journalism freelancing for various local and international Media organization’s including the BBC, Al-Jazeera, VOA, and ZDF TV in Germany among others. He is the co-Founder of the Banjul Based Media Center for Research and Development; an institution specialized in research and development undertakings. As a journalist and Communication Expert, focused on supporting the Gambia's transitional process, Mr Marenah continues to play a pivotal role in shaping a viable media and communications platform that engages necessary tools and action to increase civic participation and awareness of the needs of transitional governance to strengthen the current move towards democratization. Mr. Marenah has traveled extensively as a professional journalist in both Europe, Africa and United States and attended several local and international media trainings.

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