Returnees Detained, Released

By Mustapha Jallow                                                                            

The Gambia Police Force on Wednesday 15th November 2017, released 15 returnees who were arrested on Tuesday and detained overnight at the Kanifing Police Station, this medium can confirm.

This reporter visited the station and saw the returnees languishing behind bars while distraught family members were busy trying to get their loved ones out of their predicament. Sarjo Sanneh whose brother was among those detained by the Police, said the returnees were picked up at the premises of the International Organization for Migration on Kairaba Avenue and taken to Latri-kunda-German Police station, before being moved to Kanifing station.

‘‘These detainees are part of the 135 returnees who returned from Libya recently. Their arrest happened after they mobilized themselves to revisit the IOM office on Tuesday 14thNovember to complain about what they call the delay in the payment of monies due to them, by the International Migration office. They said they were promised in Libya that on arrival on Gambian soil, the IOM office in Banjul will compensate each of them with £1000,’’ he said.

Sanneh explained that there was a push and pull at the IOM office on Kairaba Avenue, resulting in the intervention of the Police and the subsequent arrest of the said returnees.

However, at the time of going to press, it was learned that family members were later allowed to bail their loved ones and were asked to report on bail starting from today Thursday, at about 9am.

The Assistant Police spokesperson, ASP Foday Conta said he was not in the picture but promised to find out and get back to this paper.

Efforts were made to reach out to Sanneh’s brother but this was unsuccessful.