By Mustapha Jallow
The aging grandmother of the late Lt. Col. Lamin Sanneh, the former commander of the State Guards, who was reported killed during the attack on state house in Banjul on 30 December 2014, is renewing her appeal for the Gambian authorities to release the corpse of her grandson for burial.
The corpses of Lt. Col. Sanneh and three others, namely Captain Njagga Jagne, a retired officer in the United States army, Alagi Nyass, a former member of the defunct Gambia Gendermerie, and Bakary Bojang, alias Gosso, a mentally deranged young man residing in Banjul, were held for 6 months at the mortuary in Banjul under 24 hours guard by armed soldiers. However, the corpse of ‘Gosso’ was later handed over by the authorities to the relatives on the 21 June and was buried by the family on the following day. The others corpses were not released to their respective families.
When this reporter visited the home of Lt. Col. Sanneh’s grandmother at Faji Kunda yesterday, the old woman repeated her appeal for the state to do everything possible to facilitate the release of her grandson’s corpse after being held for nearly ten months to enable the family to give it a fitting Muslim burial.
“What we can do now is only to appeal to the government to release the corpse of my grandson. I want the president to intervene and help us get the corpse for burial in accordance with Muslim rites,” said Lt. Col. Sanneh’s grandmother.
A government official attached to the Edward Francis Small Teaching Hospital (EFSTH) informed this reporter that some military personnel came to the mortuary in the early morning on 21 June and then took away the 3 remaining corpses.
When contacted to shed light on the present situation regarding the 3 corpses, Lieutenant Malick Sanyang, spokesperson of the Gambia Armed Forces (GAF), told this reporter “I don’t have any information about that.”