By Lamin Fatty
In the early hours of Friday morning, 15 July, 2022, a confrontation erupted between the Police and Military Officers stationed in Basse, over an issue of a traffic offence.
When the news of the incident broke this reporter rushed to the scene at the Police Station for confirmation.
A traffic police officer involved in the incident while explaining how the incident happened revealed that he was physically assaulted by a Navy Officer who obstructed him from doing his work.
“I stopped a particular civilian riding a motorcycle and then asked him his particulars (papers) while the motorcyclist was carrying a soldier behind him. So, when I stopped him, the soldier behind asked him to go, and I told him no, he had to stop.”
He alleged that the soldier was forcing the motorcycle rider to go because he was carrying him, and by which he also insisted since he was doing his job.
According to the said police officer, the soldier then furiously punched him in the face, and he also retaliated accordingly.
As a result, his colleague traffic officer assisted him and they arrested the military officer and escorted him to the Police Station in Basse. However, Police Officers at the Station were later physically assaulted by reinforcement Military Officers.
“We don’t know who called the Army Camp, but minutes later, we saw the Military Officers came with their pick-up at the Station and forced their way into the Station to get their man, hitting our tables and physically assaulting and abusing some Police Officers,” the striking officers narrated.
However, both the Station Officer (SO) at Basse Police Station (SO Jammeh) and the Camp Commander at the Basse Army Barracks, Colonel Sarjo Jarjue told this reporter that the confrontation was a minor misunderstanding between the two sister security forces. They said the matter has been resolved amicably by the ‘high commands’ of both parties involved.
At the same time, they urged the public to go on with their activities calmly and assured them that they would maintain peaceful co-existence.
The Navy Officer involved in the confrontation was consequently released from detention following the intervention of his colleagues.