Gambia to set up truth and reconciliation commission

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Gambia said on Thursday it would set up a Truth and Reconciliation Commission and offer reparations to victims of former President Yahya Jammeh’s government, accused of torture and killing of perceived opponents.

Justice Minister Abubacarr Tambadou said in a statement government will also probe the finances of Jammeh, who fled into exile in January to Equatorial Guinea after a rule that began in 1994 when he seized power in a coup.

Jammeh lost an election in December to now President Adama Barrow but refused to accept the result. He only stepped down after pressure from regional leaders who sent troops to Gambia to force him to leave.

Since his departure Barrow’s government has taken steps to restore the rule of law and strengthen the judiciary.
“A Truth and Reconciliation Commission with appropriate reparations for victims will be set up within the next six months and public hearings are expected to commence by the end of the year,” Tambadou said.

Government would first study other such commissions. South Africa established a Truth and Reconciliation Commission after apartheid ended in 1994 and other African countries have set up similar bodies.



The aim is to encourage people to confess crimes committed under the previous government and for victims to air injustices suffered. Reparations can also be set.