Imam Bakawsu Fofona Freed At Last!
Gambia’s controversial Imam Bakawsu Fofana has been released from state custody, despite initial denial by the Government of detaining the Sanchaba Sulay Jobe Imam, the Freedom Newspaper has gathered. The Imam returned home in good shape and has since been receiving his followers at his house. A sizeable crowd converged at the Imam’s home sympathizing with him.
Bakawsu’s arrest followed a Presidential directive to keep the Imam off the streets. This followed a strained relationship between Fofona and the State House Imam Alhagie Abdoulie Fatty, who has been launching personal attacks against Imam Fofona during his sermons at the State House mosque in Banjul. Mr. Fatty has accused Bakawsu among other things: being uneducated, ill informed, arrogant and trying to incite violence in the Gambia. A charge Fofona denies.
While under state custody, Bakawsu’s daughter died in his absence. The Imam returned home with a heavy heart. He is coping with the news of his daughter’s demise and the mental trauma dictator Jammeh has exposed him to by curtailing his freedom of movement during his arrest.
Imam Fofona has suffered untold persecution under Jammeh’s rule. His only crime is: having the daring mind to preach the gospel of truth, justice, accountability, and peace in a country, where fear rules. The dictator has transformed the Supreme Islamic Council as his personal property. He has bought the likes of Imam Fatty, Banding Drammeh, Momodou Lamin Touray, and other religious leaders within and outside the Greater Banjul Area.
So far, Bakawsu is among the rare Imams yet to fall into Jammeh’s inducement of Islamic scholars in the country. That’s why he is paying the heavy price of Jammeh’s state sponsored bully against the Imam.
NIA agents familiar with Bakawsu’s case, who spoke to the Freedom Newspaper said President Jammeh is behind the arrest of Bakawsu. The agents said the Imam has not committed any offence per say, but Jammeh just merely wants to assert his authority to intimidate the Imam to total submission to his rule.
“ The Imam was treated with respect. No one harass him during his detention. We know for a fact that he is a victim of Jammeh’s bully. He is doing this to silence Bakawsu. Left with us alone, this man should not have been here in the first place,” said our source.
While Bakawsu was under detention, Jammeh was constantly being updated about the Imam’s composure and responses during the security interrogation. He is a free man for now.