On Abdication and Dereliction of Duty: Letter to Former Attorney General Ba Tambedou 

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On Abdication and Dereliction of Duty: Letter to Former Attorney General Ba Tambedou 

Honourable Former Minister and my dear brother, I send you greetings this early dawn of Saturday June, 27, 2020 as you begin the process of abdicating your duty as Minister in charge of our critical transition process that is supposed to rectify the errors of the past and cast a sustainable framework for the future of our motherland.

Truly you have succeeded in gaming the system. You have built your resume, pleased our former colonial masters by ticking all the boxes they set out for you at the genesis of this transitional government. You have done the bidding of the Tubabs but you have not served your country; neither were you ever motivated by the higher ideals of sincere service to our people in our quest for nation building.

Ba Tambedou, you are going down into our history books as the worst man to have ever occupied the very important office of Attorney General and Minister of Justice.

Many people may be surprised at how you earned this laurel but I saw this coming. From your resume to your character, I knew from day one, that our government made a bad choice of justice Minister for a transition process that was set to be the most cumbersome. But what my good friend calls “connectocracy and nepotism” has for long been the yardstick for appointments and privileges in our country.

Otherwise, you had no professional record to justify your appointment to the office of Minister of Justice. We all knew this but the ‘kabudu’ that was wielding power at the time was quite comfortable in doing whatever they wanted knowing quite well that the potential noisemakers at the time were all in tow with the team at the helm of affairs of our nation.

From the staffing of the various commissions for the rolling out of the transitional justice process, to the haemorrhaging of the public treasury in financing of these commissions, your ministry never showed any signs of commitment to accountability and probity in the process of holding past occupants of public office to account. The murder of Harouna Jatta in Kanilai happened under your watch and it was brushed under the carpet. Young Gambians were gunned down in Faraba and you watched as a cold blooded spectator as the victims were robbed of any opportunity for justice.

You copied and applied the style of the man you have identified as your worst personal enemy, Yahya Jammeh, as you blatantly engaged in abuse of court processes to keep Killa Ace, and then the “Three Years Jotna” team in extended remand custody just to help your government get even with their adversaries.

The looting of former President Yahya Jammeh’s assets was your personal vindictive project and the key beneficiaries all had personal links with you or your boss. You may well choose to make Yahya Jammeh your enemy and set a personal scheme for revenge but the majority of Gambians are not interested in an orgy of vindictiveness. All we wanted was a proper and transparent process of truth seeking and justice with an eye on reconciliation. But you chose a personal agenda of egomaniacal display of false bravado in the matter of Jammeh with a a clear aim of pandering to the whims and caprices of our former colonial masters. Would that you cared enough about the genuine victims who still yearn for closure and compensation.

And as you tell the public that the funds from sales of Jammeh’s assets amounted to D1 billion, I ask you where is the other D9 billion?

Any casual observer of the way and manner in which Jammeh’s assets were sold will conclude that due process was not followed and this has been authenticated by The Gambia Court of Appeal in their most recent rulings. On average Yahya Jammeh’s assets were sold for about 10 percent of their market value and that is why I am asking for the other D9 billion which makes the current First Lady’s alleged D35 million deal a trifling matter. So the question ‘kodo lay?’ Is more relevant you now Honourable Minister.

Honourable Minister, it is in view of the foregoing premises that I summed up my thoughts about your decision to jump off President Barrow’s transitional cabinet at this most critical of all times. Here’s my post on Facebook, and while you digest this dose, I am penning the second part of what could be the longest series of epistles I would have ever penned:

And therefore Gambians must thank God that the worst Attorney General and Minister of Justice in our history has abdicated his office. 

It is a well calculated egocentric move aimed at scoring maximum benefit for himself and nothing else. But it is indeed good riddance of a corrupt and inept pseudo-Lawyer with no track record of professional excellence.

What ought to be done right now is to set up a commission of enquiry into how Ba Tambedou handled the shady disposal of Yahya Jammeh’s assets. Such a commission would have had as principal witnesses, Ba Tambedou, Alpha Barry and a certain fair coloured lady.

But Barrow is not interested in truth or justice. Ba Tambedou has freed the jungulars, lost every single case brought against government during his tenure as Justice Minister. 

He set up the Human Rights Commission and led them to be the first institution to recognise and promote homosexuality as a right in our country.

Now the UN has rewarded him with a job for promoting LGBT rights in The Gambia.

Good riddance. But let the National Assembly ask Ba Tambedou to present a bank statement of the account into which proceeds of the sale of Jammeh’s assets were lodged. This is a very critical assignment that needs to be done before Ba Tambedou leaves the shores of our country.

#CantCageMe

Momodou Sabally

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