Gambia: Omar Sarjo is a victim of blackmail; Gambia’s security reform is a big joke-Top Army Officer Tells Freedom Newspaper

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A highly respected career Gambian military officer says Omar Sarjo, a former army corporal, who was accused of being a non-Gambian, and was fired from the army, was a victim of blackmail. “Omar was a very hardworking and discipline soldier. I have a very strong bond with junior soldiers, so I know Omar very well. I really felt sad about his predicament, he is a victim of blackmail,” the military officer told Freedom Newspaper.

The officer, who wished not to be named, had a Q and A interview with this medium. Please read on…..

Freedom Newspaper: To the best of your knowledge, is Omar Sarjo a Gambian?

Officer’s response:  Sorry for the late reply, I was so busy today. I can’t say for certain whether he is a Gambian or not because I don’t know his place of birth nor do I know his parents. I know that before one is enlisted into the GAF, s/he undergoes a Screening process at the NIA and I believe that Omar has gone through that process.

Freedom Newspaper: What kind of soldier was Omar Sarjo, when he worked under you?

Officer’s response: Omar was a very hardworking and discipline soldier. I have a very strong bond with junior soldiers, so I know Omar very well.

Freedom Newspaper: How do you feel about his case?

Officer’s response: I really felt sad about his predicament, he is a victim of blackmail.

Freedom Newspaper: Do you believe that he was sacked because of his Jolla ethnicity?

Officer’s response: I don’t think he was victimized because of his tribe/ethnicity because I believe other soldiers are serving in the GAF who bear the same surname as his and hailed from the same Village. I stand to be corrected but please do your findings.

Freedom Newspaper: What do you think needs to be done to have an efficient and sustainable security reform?

Officer’s response: The SSR is a big joke my brother. How can you remove young well-abled Officers from the GAF and bring in old disgruntled, lack of touch Officers to man command positions and you still call that reform? You start the reform from the strategic level and the tactical level before you can reform the operational level. Until that is done, we can’t be sure of any sustainable SSR.

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