Former Gambian Energy Minister dies in Seattle after losing consciousness in a fistfight

Dr. Edward Saja Sanneh

The police in the city of Seattle, Washington State, United States, have confirmed that Dr. Edward Saja Sanneh, a former energy minister in the previous regime, passed away after being assaulted in Hing Hay Park in Seattle’s Chinatown-International District on May 13, 2024.

The individual suspected of the assault was apprehended following the incident in which Sanneh, aged 46, lost consciousness. He was subsequently transported to a hospital and passed away a few days after that.

Dr. Sanneh, holding a PhD in Environmental Engineering, was appointed Minister of Energy by former President Jammeh in 2014. After two years, he was dismissed from his ministerial position in 2016.

The Alkamba Times was unable to determine the motive behind the fatal incident, as sources indicated that the assailant was not acquainted with the victim.

Alagi Yero Jallow, a veteran Gambian journalist, in a tribute to Dr. Sanneh, said: 

“Dr. Edward Sanneh was an outstanding, indomitable, and irreverent scholar, a pragmatic professional, a remarkable human being, a dedicated husband and father, and a faithful and delightful friend to all who had the privilege of knowing him. He was an exceptionally decent and compassionate individual. The sharpness of his intellect, the kindness of his heart, and the selflessness of his spirit immediately impressed me. His passion for the advancement of youth was profound and contagious. I saw him as a man of wisdom and a great thinker. I learned immensely from him through our engaging and challenging discussions on various topics during online and telephone conversations while working on a draft manuscript for publication. His contributions to my intellectual curiosity and personal development will forever be treasured.” 

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Sainey M.K. Marenah
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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