By Ousman A. Marong
A senior agent of the then National Intelligent Agency (NIA) Aziz Hydara has implicated current Minister of Interior Yankuba Sonko and Director of Operations at the Drug Law Enforcement Agency Ebrima ‘Jim’ Drammeh over the missing and falsified dairies containing names of massacred West African migrants.
Mr. Hydara while testified before the Truth Reconciliation and Reparation
Commission through a video link on Wednesday said Sonko was the Crime
Management Coordinator at The Gambia Police Force at the time while Drammeh was
the Director of Operations at the National Intelligence Agency.
Hydara appeared before the commission in connection to his involvement in the taskforce which assisted ECOWAS/ UN investigators.
According to him, both Sonko and Drammeh were present when the diaries were being altered, adding that the alteration was done before the arrival of the ECOWAS/UN investigators in the country.
The witness said former Interior minister, Ousman Sonko told them that he would go to Yahya Jammeh for them to be compensation, adding the he (Ousman Sonko) was eventually appointed Inspector General of Police.
Hydara said he regretted participating in the covering-up and apologies to all victims. He said he is not aware of the $500,000 paid the Ghanaian government by The Gambian Government.
In his conclusion remarks, he said to achieve the slogan “Never Again”, we must have leaders with dignity, loyalty and integrity. He said a perpetrator cannot and should not be a leader of a country.
He finally appealed to people to corporate with the Commission by telling the truth.
It could be recalled that, July- August 2005 Bundung Police Station, Barra Police Station and the PIU Headquarters diaries are reported missing or authorities deliberately failed to enter names of the migrants.
Station diaries are book kept in police stations to record incidents recorded in a quotidian basis. They contain serial numbers, incident time, by whom it was reported, and if the entries are completed.
It is not allowed to scratch the station’s diary and should in case it happens, there should only be a light stroke and the person that makes the stroke must sign on top of the stroke.
During the first Republic, officers were only allowed to use red and blue pens to write in their diaries. However, this subsequently changed under the second Republic by using blue and black only.