By Ousman Sillah and Lamin Fatty in URR
The body of the late Buba Baldeh, a native of Basse Mansajang Kunda and a former minister of Youth and Sports in the first republic, has been finally taken and buried in Medina Gounass in the neighbouring Republic of Senegal .
When the family compound of the late Buba Baldeh in Mansajang was visited, Amadou Asset Baldeh, one of his uncles confirmed that the body was taken to Medina Gounass for burial. He described the sudden demise of Buba, as he was commonly called, as very sad but added that the family has accepted everything in good faith and is praying that his soul rest in perfect peace. He described the late Buba as a generous man who also cares for both his family and relatives.
Another uncle also made similar remarks and added that their wish was for Buba’s remains to be interred in his home village of Mansajang but did not know what brought about the sudden change for him to be finally buried in Senegal.
Many people in Basse were visiting the family home to extend their condolences which included Honorable Mohammed Magassy, the National Assembly Member for Basse constituency.
When this reporter contacted the commissioner of police in URR, Mr. Lamin Touray, regarding the alleged denial of the entry of the body of the late Buba Baldeh at the Sabi border post, he referred him to the police PRO, stating that he does not know anything about the late Buba Baldeh.
Buba Baldeh, a former Member of Parliament (MP) and cabinet minister in the first republic, died on Wednesday, 9 July 2014, at a hospital in a surburb in Dakar, following a brief illness after returning from a visit to Nigeria.
The late Buba, who was living in exile in Senegal since 2006, has been politically active during the first republic, first contesting and winning the Independent seat for Basse Constituency in 1982. In 1992, he was elected as PPP MP for Jimara constituency. He was minister of Youth and Sports under President Dawda Jawara from 1992 – 1994 when the AFPRC toppled the Jawara regime.
Buba later joined the ruling APRC party and became its deputy national mobiliser (youth) before he was removed in 2004.
He has also served as managing director of the Daily Observer Company from 2000 to 2002.
Prior to joining active politics, he was the national head of the German funded Freedom From Hunger Campaign (FFHC).
The late Buba, who was in his early sixties, is survived by two wives and several children.