Editorial: 3 Months Today Imam Baba Leigh Still Behind Bars


64042_10152348347985623_1943350989_nMarch 3rd, 2013 marks three months today since Imam Baba Leigh was arrested by plain clothes officials and led to the NIA office. Imam Leigh has not been charged for any crimes, has not been arraigned before a court of law, his family and lawyers have no access to him. No one have seen or heard from Imam Leigh.

What has Imam Baba Leigh done that warrants his arrest and detention for three months without charges?. What crime has he committed that is so terrifying to the government that they dare not produce him and take him to court? What crime has Imam Leigh committed that would keep him away from access to his wife, children and family? What moral right and duty does this government have to keep Imam Baba Leigh for three months?

Why is the government so afraid of bringing Imam Baba Leigh to court, charge him or release him on bail? What moral justification does President Jammeh and his government have to keep Imam Baba Leigh behind bars?

We further question why President Jammeh and his government continue to detain citizens indefinitely without charge. What does this government expect to attract by detaining Imam Leigh? Doesn’t this vindicate the critics of this government who continue to accuse the government of dictatorship, suppression of dissent, freedom of expression and political association. How could this government justify detaining the likes of Imam Leigh without charge or trials?

Many Gambians including supporters of President Jammeh and his government continue to question the priorities of this government. Why they continue to victimize citizens regardless of whether they are opponents of this government or supporters. It is becoming clearer everyday that President Jammeh and his government are losing credibility in presiding over the security of the nation. He has demonstrated that he has no control over what happens in and around the country. He does not show any concern over the security of citizens but himself and his government. Gambians by the day are beginning to see and sense the need for change.

We remind President Jammeh that Imam Baba Leigh and the many other Gambians have families, they have a right to life, liberty and freedom. That arresting and detaining them behind bars without justification undermines the very peace and security that the president continue to preach. We remind the President that it has been three months since Imam Leigh was arrested and detained. That the government of the Gambia are responsible for the safety and freedom of Imam Leigh. That the country is sitting on the edge waiting to hear the release of Imam Leigh. Any prolonged detention of Imam Leigh can only further fuel tension and distrust between the Gambian people and the government. Imam Leigh must be accounted for and be released immediately. Anything less is a betrayal of the very oath this President has taken… Release Imam Baba Leigh now…. 3 months detention without charges and or trail cannot be justified in any say or form.


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