A Swiss jet has landed in Banjul, Freedom Newspaper can reveal. A Swiss television crew and investigators are in the country to interview former state security agents on the pending case of Ousman Sonko, the former Interior Minister. The mile two prison was their first port of call this morning. They entered the prison accompanied by their host The Gambian government. The crew met Yankuba Badjie, the former Director General of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) and Saihou Jeng, the former Operations Director at the NIA. Both Badjie and Jeng have been languishing in prison for close to the four years on murder related charges. They have been charged together with their colleagues for the death of Solo Sandeng.
Sources said both Yankuba Badjie and Saihou Jeng have refused to speak to the Swiss television crew. They refused to serve as state witnesses in the case of the Swiss government against Ousman Sonko. They complained to the Swiss crew about their prolonged detention without justice. That their case has been dragging for close to four years.
Their lawyers weren’t present when the Swiss investigators arrived at mile two, our source said. Badjie and Jeng refused to avail themselves to the Swiss investigators.
“A camera was fixed in one of the rooms at mile two before the Swiss crew met Badjie and Jeng. Attempts to have the duo comment on Ousman Sonko’s case failed, as they refused to cooperate with the Swiss crew,” said one of our sources.
Ousainou Njie, an in law of Saihou Jeng, has confirmed the story. “My family was present when the Swiss officials met with Saihou Jeng and Yankuba Badjie. They were trying to use Saihou and Yankuba as witnesses in the case of Ousman Sonko, but they refused. These people have been languishing in jail for almost four years without justice. It is unfair for the state to use them as witnesses. I am in support of their refusal to speak to the Swiss authorities,” Njie told Freedom Newspaper.
Mr. Njie’s sister is married to Saihou Jeng. “When the change of government happened in December of 2016, Saihou Jeng, told me that he was not going run away from the country. He said he hasn’t committed any crime that would warrant him to leave this country. He decided to stay, and he was arrested,” he added.
It should be noted that both Yankuba Badjie and Saihou Jeng refused to testify at the TRRC when they were invited by the commission.
The Gambian government hasn’t issue any statement on the visit of the Swiss investigators to the mile two prison.