APRIL 10 CRISIS ("The key finding was made by the Coroner.")

Published by Foroyaa on Sunday, 13 April 2014 -  Written by Ousman Njie

According to the statement issued on the Report of the Commission of Enquiry into Public disturbances of 10 and 11 April 2000, “the events of 10th and 11th April 2000 were clearly a turning point in the history of the Gambian Nation. 

The events have shown that peace must be deliberately nurtured. If it is not, anarchy and civil strife may be the consequences, as events in some neighbouring countries have shown.” 

As we remember the victims the above statement should preoccupy the mind of every Gambian, especially those holding public office. The lives of almost two million people are in their hands.

It all started with the intention of GAMSU to hold a peaceful demonstration on Monday 10th April 2000, to see justice done in the case of the alleged rape of Binta Manneh and the alleged murder of Ebrima Barry.

Inexperienced in crowd control of unarmed protestors and submitting to irrational command, those deployed to disperse the students armed with guns and life bullets decided to use them. The Lartey Commission, headed by Justice Felix Lartey has traced what happened and their findings have been published. 

The key finding was made by the Coroner. In short, upon Application by the Attorney General, a Coroner’s Inquest was convened and on the key issue of the cause of death, it came up with the following verdict: 

“1. That Abdoulie Sanyang of Old Jeshwang died from a stampede and that his death was as a result of an accident. 

2. That Bubacarr Badjie, a student, aged 10, died of gunshot wounds from a high velocity weapon on the 10th day of April, 2000. 

3. That Wuyeh Fode Mansally, a student of Tallinding Islamic Institute died of gunshot wounds from a high velocity weapon on the 10th day of April, 2000.

4. That Momodou Lamin Njie; a student of The Gambia Technical Training Institute, G.T .T .I. died of gunshot wounds on the 1oth day of April , 2000 . 

5. That Calisco Prera, a resident of New Jeshwang, died of gun shot wounds on the10th day of April 2000.

6. That Karamo Barrow, a former student of the Institute for Continuing Education, l.C.E., died of gunshot wound on Monday the 10th of April. 

7. That Reginald Carrol, a student of La Fourmi Institute, Kanifing, died of gunshot wounds on Monday, the 10th day of April, 2000. 

8. That Omar Barrow, a Journalist and a Gambia Red Cross Volunteer, died of gunshot wounds on Monday, the 10th day of April, 2000. 

9. That Momodou Lamin Chune, a student of Latrikunda Middle School, died of gunshot wounds on Monday the 10th of April, 2000. 

10. That Lamin A. Bojang, a student of Nusrat Senior Secondary School, died of gunshot wounds on Monday the 1oth day of April, 2000.

11. That Ousman Sabally, a student of Brikamaba Upper Basic School, C.R.D. died of gunshot wounds on Tuesday the 11th day of April, 2000 and,

12. That (An unknown male teenager) of Brikama, Western Division died of gunshot wounds on Monday, the 1oth of April, 2000. And for the avoidance of doubt, I am convinced that all the above deaths which were attributed to gunshot wounds were caused by live bullets.” 

As we remember the dead and the injured, investigation should be done to find out how the families of the dead and those injured who are still alive, are faring. Foroyaa is inspired by Abdoukarim Jammeh, a victim who walks to the office every year to be interviewed on the incident. 

History has recordings of his efforts to ensure that the victims are given support and that the incident is never repeated.

Source: Foroyaa Editorial

2. NOTED ABOVE NAMES MISSING FROM CORONER'S REPORT PUBLISHED IN FOROYAA EDITORIAL;

  • Ebrima Barry - 1st Victim
  • Bamba Jobarteh
  • Sainey Nyabally
  • Ousman Sembene
  • Bakary Njie