The Ranking member on Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee, Mr Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, has called on Ghana’s Parliament to push for the prosecution of the perpetrators behind the execution of 44 Ghanaians in The Gambia.
Mr Ablakwa made the comments during the delivery of a speech to mark International Day of Human Rights.
Forty-four Ghanaians were massacred in The Gambia under Yahya Jammeh’s orders in 2005.
Two Gambian soldiers who worked for a hit squad controlled by the former dictator, on Tuesday, 23 July 2019 admitted to participating in the 2005 execution of 56 West African migrants, including the 44 Ghanaians.
Lieutenant Malick Jatta and Corporal Omar A. Jallow revealed to The Gambia’s Truth, Reconciliation and Reparations Commission (TRRC) that the migrants were executed by the “Junglers” squad, a paramilitary force that took orders from Jammeh, across the Gambian border in Senegalese territory.
“We were told they were mercenaries,” Jatta said, adding that he shot and killed one of the migrants. “I heard people shouting in the forest saying ‘save us Jesus.’” Jallow told the TRRC that Lt Col Solo Bojang, the leader of the operation, told the men that “the order from Yahya Jammeh is that they are all to be executed.”
There have been renewed calls by both the families of the victims and civil society organisations for the prosecution of the perpetrators.
Delivering a speech on the floor of Parliament to mark the occasion, Mr Ablakwa called on the government of Ghana to ensure that justice is served since the soldiers have confessed to the massacred.
“The three soldiers have confessed to participating in the killing of our citizens and other West African migrants on the orders of Yayah Jammeh and this confession was broadcast live to the world at the ongoing Truth, Reconciliation and Repatriation Commission in The Gambia in July 2019.
“Mr Speaker, since Ghana and The Gambia pledged to bring the actual perpetrators to justice and the soldiers have confessed to murdering our constituents on the orders of Yayah Jammeh, this August house should take key interest in this matter.
“Parliament must urged the government of Ghana to reopen an investigation into the killings with the ultimate aim of bringing those who bear the greatest responsibility for the murder, enforced disappearance, and torture of our constituents, to justice.”