By Yankuba Jallow
Warrant Officer Class 2 Pa Ousman Sanneh has admitted participating in the killing of five people and torture of three while serving as a member of the ‘Junglers’ squadron.
“I participated in the murder of Baba Jobe, Mamud Ceesay, Ebou Jobe, Tumani Jallow and Abdoulie Gaye. I participated in two tortures,” the witness said.
Continuing with his testimony before the TRRC on Wednesday, Sanneh said he was incorporated into the ‘Junglers’ squadron in 2013.
“We killed for Yahya Jammeh. We killed in his name. We buried his victims in his garden,” he said.
Execution of Two Gambian-Americans
He said the first operation he participated as a ‘jungler’involved the killing of two Gambian-Americans. He said the ‘junglers’ who participated in the killing of the two Gambian-Americans were Major Nuha Badjie, Captains Mustapha Sanneh, Michael Jatta and Michael Correa, Warrant Officer Class One (WO1) Nfansu Nyabally, WO1 Pa Sanneh, WO2 Malick Manga, Staff Sergeant Sulayman Sambou, Sergeants Omar Jallow, Amadou Badjie and Saikouba Jarju.
He said they were briefed by their senior ‘Junglers’ that they should arrest two Gambian-Americans who were in The Gambia with intent to knock down government of Yahya Jammeh. He said he was with Michael Corea monitoring the two Gambian-Americans wherever they were going and they gave information to their other colleagues with regards to their movements. He said his other colleague ‘junglers’ mounted a vehicle checkpoint around the Brusubi Turntable and when the duo came in a vehicle, they apprehended them.
He detailed that after arresting the two, they proceeded to their residence where they conducted a search and transported them to Kanilai. He said in Kanilai, while they were digging a grave, they were told that Yahya Jammeh ordered ‘for their execution and chopped into pieces and be buried.’
“They chopped off their heads. The one who did it I cannot say because I was not there because we were (concentrated) digging. When they came, I saw them (the corpses) and all of us buried them,” the witness said.
He said he participated in the killing of the two under the instruction of his commander, Major Nuha Badjie.
On the Killing of Tumani Jallow
The witness said there was a day they (the Junglers) were on patrol and Tumani Jallow and Abdoulie Gaye were brought in an NIA vehicle by Sheikh Omar Jeng and one other NIA agent.
“When Sheikh Omar Jeng came, he asked us about Mustapha Sambou and handed Tumani and the other to him. Tumani was brought into our car and we left,” the witness said.
He said he joined the same vehicle with Major Momodou Jarju alias Rambo, Sergeant Saikouba Jarju and Sergeant Omar Jallow alias Oya.
“I was the driver of the vehicle and I was ordered by Major Momodou Jarju alias Rambo to start the vehicle. I asked him where we were going and he told me we were going to Foni,” the witness said.
He said in the other ‘junglers’ vehicle were Malick Manga, Sulayman Sambou, Mustapha Sanneh and Michael Jatta.
The witness said Tumani Jallow was cuffed, adding that they all knew that the two were going to be killed.
“I heard Omar Jallow asking Rambo where is the rope and Rambo handed the rope to him. Saikouba Jarju and Oya suffocated Tumani until he passed off using the rope,” the witness said.
The witness said before Tumani was killed, he heard him telling his tormentor, Omar Jallow “my senior brother you are taking me and kill me” and Oya replied “yes, I am going to kill you because that was the order I received.”
“They were killed on our way to Kanilai,” he said, adding that the corpses were buried in a garden belonging to Yahya Jammeh, the former President of The Gambia.
He said it was Lieutenant-Colonel Sanna Manjang who came with the tools used to dig the grave. He said it was the same garden where the two Gambian-Americans were buried.
He said those who participated in the burial of the two slain soldiers were Nuha Badjie , Rambo, Mustapha Sanneh, Nfansu Nyabally, himself, Malick Manja, Omar Jallow, Saikou Jarju, Michael Jatta and Amadou Badjie.
He said the ‘junglers’ operate based on the instructions from General Saul Badjie who also got orders from Yahya Jammeh, the ex-President.
He denied having participated in the execution of the 9 death row inmates of Mile II.
“I heard it but I was not present,” he said.
Also, he denied having participated in the torture of Imam Baba Leigh and Imam Bakawsu Fofana but admitted having participated in the torture of civilians after the 30th December 2014 attempted coup.
30th December 2014 State House Attack
He said the 30th December 2014 State House attack met him at home and he got a call from Rambo around 2 am who instructed him to come because the State House was under attack. He said Rambo came and picked him at his home and on their way to Banjul; they passed along and collected Malick Manga. He added that they stood at the Denton Bridge waiting for their other colleagues until General Saul Badjie came and they left for the State House. He said they went to State House and met the former CDS Ousman Bargie under handcuff.
“I removed the handcuff on the hands of CDS Ousman Bargie,” he said.
He said they found the bodies of the three soldiers who attacked the State House lying. He said on the following day, some members of the ‘Junglers’ picked Lieutenant-Colonel Sarjo Jarju and took him to the NIA under the instruction of Major Nuha Badjie.
He said around 2 am, they were ordered to go and bring Captain Abdoulie Jobe from the army training school.
“We found him sleeping at the Quick Reaction Force room and we woke him and took him to the NIA where we handed him over to,” he said.
He explained that on the following day, they were ordered to go to the NIA and torture the arrestees. He said the group that tortured Lieutenant-Colonel Sarjo Jarju were Lieutenant-Colonel Nuha Badjie, Major Momodou Jarju alias Rambo, Captains Mustapha Sanneh, Michael Correa and Michael Jatta, WO1 Nfansu Nyabally, WO2 Malick Manga, himself, Staff Sergeant Sulayman Sambou, Sergeant Omar Jallow and Sergeant Amadou Badjie.
He said at the NIA, there was a table where Lieutenant-Colonel Sarjo Jarju was placed and beaten for about 30 minutes.
“We used horse pipes, others held his hands and I was among those holding his legs. We beat him for over 30 minutes and then we released him. He (Sarjo Jarju) was crying and was not saying anything. He was beaten by only two individuals; Sulayman Sambou and Michael Jatta while others were holding him,” the witness testified.
He said Captain Abdoulie Jobe was also placed on the same table and tortured in the same way as Sarjo Jarju, but his beating lasted only for 20 minutes.
“We did not have the power to torture anyone. We were ordered to do that. We were junior officers and we couldn’t have disobeyed the instructions. In the military we were taught to obey all orders,” the witness said.
He said he received D15,000 as compensation in addition to his salary for only 3 months.
The witness told the TRRC that he was born on the 3rd March 1972 in Kartong Village, Kombo South District. He said he joined the Gambia National Army in 1990 with the 15 Intake.