‘I can only forgive once justice is served’ – Ayesha Jammeh

Ayesha a niece to former President Jammeh lost her father Haruna Jammeh at the tender age of fourteen when Jammeh ordered his execution for unknown reasons.

By Alieu Jallow

Ayesha Haruna Jammeh, a victim of human rights violations under President Yahya Jammeh, has said she can only forgive when justice is delivered to the victims.

Ayesha, a niece to former president, at the age of 14 lost her father, Haruna Jammeh, when President Jammeh allegedly ordered his killing.

She said her father was a peaceful man, and his disappearance had left a deep scar in her.

Ayesha still asks what could be the reason why Jammeh reportedly gave orders to kill his father and aunt, and wants to have the opportunity to face Jammeh to ask him that question.

That Haruna Jammeh was killed was revealed during the public hearings of the Truth, Reconciliation and Reparations Commission, TRRC, which is yet to make public public its findings.

Ms Jammeh currently serves as the program officer for the Victims Center in The Gambia, and says she is committed to making sure justice is served, when the TRRC report on human right violations under Yahya Jammeh comes out.

She is aware that fostering reconciliation is a mandate of the TRRC. However, she believes that reconciliation should be a victim-led process, and not the state or the TRRC forcing victims to forgive and forget.

She suspects a lack of political will to bring perpetrators of crimes under Yahya Jammeh to justice, following the alliance of Jammeh’s former ruling party, APRC, with the party of the incumbent, Adama Barrow.

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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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