Category: News


Mr. Osuman Bojang, a former Intelligence Analyst with the National Intelligence Agency (NIA), now a reporter with the Standard Newspaper has been missing for weeks–amid fears that Mr. Bojang might have been possibly executed by the dictatorship in Banjul, the Freedom Newspaper can report. Mr. Bojang, who was sacked, detained and brutally tortured while under NIA custody about a year ago, later took up employment with imagesSheriff Bojang’s Standard Newspaper as a reporter. He was hired by the Standard as a Staff Reporter, cum Islamic columnist. His Islamic column at the Standard was titled the “Friday Khutbah.” Mr. Bojang has not been showing up for work for weeks now.
His employer Sheriff Bojang told the Freedom Newspaper in a brief phone conversation on Tuesday night that he has no comment to make on the matter. He asked us to call him back sometime later for comment.
“Could you call me back later please,” Sheriff Bojang politely said. He refrained from making any comments on his reporter’s disappearances.
Sheriff’s News Editor Mr. Sainey Darboe, when contacted he also declined to comment on reporter Ousman Bojang’s alleged disappearances. Mr. Darboe referred us to his boss Sheriff Bojang, whom he said would be in the better position to shed light on the story.
On Tuesday afternoon, this paper received a news tipped-off from a highly placed source in Banjul intimating that the Management of the Standard Newspaper is reluctant or somehow scared to report about the abduction of their reporter Ousman Bojang by Jammeh’s security operatives for fear of possible retribution from the widely feared NIA. Our source said both “Sheriff Bojang and his Editor Sainey Darboe are aware of Ousman Bojang’s disappearance, but are apparently ignoring such an important story.”
The silence low key reactions we received from both Sheriff and Sainey doesn’t speak well for an Editor and also a proprietor of a renowned private newspaper. The mere fact that Standard fails to investigate or report on Bojang’s non failure to show up to work speaks volume. It is the responsibility of his employer (the Standard) to check with his wife and family to establish what might have been responsible for Ous ” no call, no show” at work. Here was an asset to the Standard–given his past security background as an NIA intelligence analyst.
Prior to his disappearance, Ousman Bojang was among the prolific writers at the Standard. He covers Islamic issues and other societal matters. He wrote series of stories on the arrest and prosecution of the Darsilami Singajorr religious leader and his followers.
It is not clear what might have occasioned his abduction and possible execution, but sources said Mr. Bojang has been on Jammeh’s “bad books” since his unceremonious exit from the NIA.
During his previous arrest, Bojang was accused of being a Freedom Newspaper informant. He was also accused of working with the “enemies of the state” residing overseas. His working relationship with the current DG of the NIA Yanks Badjie was not cordial at all. Badjie was said to have been very instrumental in his past arrest and subsequent firing.
Ousman Bojang is a graduate of the University of The Gambia. He used to be the President of the University Student Union. He bags a Bachelors degree in Economics and Finance. Jammeh promised to finance his Master’s program in Scotland, but he never fulfilled his promise to Bojang, said our source.
Mr. Bojang joined the Standard Newspaper team after losing his job at the NIA. He is believed to have been murdered by Jammeh’s agents. His family have lost contacts with him since his abduction. It is getting to one month since Ousman Bojang disappeared from his family. Jammeh’s security agents were said to have picked him up from his home.



It saddens me to report that our Social Security and Housing Finance Corporation is nearing bankruptcy. As you know, the SSHFC is mandated to collect mandatory contributions from all Gambian workers towards their retirement. Right now, the SSHFC is barely able to pay the salaries of its employees let alone the pensions owed to Gambian retirees.
The reasons for the bankruptcy of the SSHFC is mainly due to the fact that the pension benefits have been used for the past 8 years to guarantee loans given to the private businesses of Yaya Jammeh. Each time each of Yaya’s business go badownload (1)nkrupt, the banks holding the loans would call in the guarantees provided by the SSHFC. The underlying assets of these guarantees are treasury bills purchased with the pension contributions of Gambian workers.
The first of Yaya’s companies to go bankrupt was a groundnut company…. This company was supposed to be in the business of purchasing groundnuts but dues to mismanagement, it went bankrupt and allegedly cost Gambian workers over $10 million. The next Jammeh business to go ….. was GAMVEG (co-owned Muhammad Bazzi) which was supposed to be making vegetable oil but it too went ….. and the Gambian pension contributors allegedly paid over $5 million.
The latest venture on the verge of alleged bankruptcy is GAMPETROLEUM (Jammeh, Bazzi). This company co-owned with Jammeh’s Lebanese partners allegedly owes Gambian banks over $40 million. The SSHFC however does not have this money anymore as it has been bankrolling many of Jammeh’s wasteful projects and is more or less bankrupt just like NAWEC, GPA, GAMTEL all of which have been milked dry by Jammeh.
For those Gambians, who are currently contributing, it is important that they try as soon as possible to obtain their statement of accounts from SSHFC asap.
With a statement in hand, even if the SSHFC goes bankrupt, the worker may be paid by future governments. If you go to obtain your statement at SSHFC, they may try to give you excuses as to why they cannot give you your statement. But just insist that it is your right by Gambian law to have a free statement once every year as a contributor. As we speak, SSHFC employees are busy deleting people’s account and debiting their balances to reduce the liability of the SSHFC.
In the event of change, Gambians need to make sure that Tumbul Danso, Momodou Lamin Gibba, and Edward Graham (present and former SSHFC MDs) are detained to be able to explain what happened to the funds. Abdoulie Cham the current Director of Finance will also be needed to explain.
As for the banks that are taking the pensioners money for guarantee, they too will have to return the money because they know very well that these loan are private loans and they should not resort to pensioners funds to recover their careless loans to Yaya and his partners.
So both SSHFC employees and bank employees should know that Gambian workers will not accept losing their contributions just like that. So, they better be ready to explain their role in the theft of pension funds very soon because the Jammeh regime is on its dying legs.


picGambia’s Secretary General and Minister for Presidential Affairs Momodou Sabally, has said that a bill will be submitted to parliament that will seek to ban all gay rights and homosexuality in the country.
In a statement to the press on Friday, he said government plans to strengthen its efforts to ward off any attempt to promote homosexuality, drug abuse and other crimes in The Gambia.
He said the decision was taken during the just concluded meeting of chiefs in Soma, Lower River Region.
According to Mr Sabally, Gambia will not import any western culture into the country in exchange for foreign aid.
Gambian president Yahya Jammeh has severally declared war against gay rights and has branded homosexuals as vermin that should be killed like mosquitoes that spread malaria.


Bisimilahi Rahmane Raheemee, Alhamulilahi, Rabialaamena (In the name of Allah , The Beneficent , The Merciful, All praises and thanks to Allah)
Today marks the 10th Anniversary of the unwarranted and illegitimate killing of a most loved and loving husband, a very good brother, a supporting and loyal friend, a daring and fearless journalist, an excellent mentor, doting granddad and best of all the greatest dad ever.
In the last decade Africa has seen the hunt, butchering and murder of her finest and the culprits in most of these cases families are still waiting for justice. Before, journalists were killed whilst reporting at atrocities, unrest and at uprisings; unfortunately now Africa has seen most of them getting killed meticulously by enemies of Press Freedom and Free Expression. Enabling them to continue abuse of office, corruption and in an attempt to instill fear of God into other journalists and young aspiring Journalists and or putting them off from this noble profession.
When we woke up on Friday 17th December least did we think or knew that this day would mark the disruption and displacement that would be the order of our days and years to come. A nervous shock to the system that we can never ever recover from.
We can say we had good times, we can even say we had great times but since 16th December 2004. We have never had the peace to make it last without the memories of that horrendous day or its aftermath opening the flood gates.
From the 17th of December 2004, a home was changed to a house, a sense of security, peace and tranquility left broken, when home doesn’t feel like home anymore. When dreams, hopes and aspirations are snatched and killed with the very source of our existence. In an instance all was lost forever.
When people said “sorry for your loss, know it’s hard but time is a healer”, I totally disagree, for after 10 years, the scars are still present and it seems Time cannot begin to heal all this horror, dismay and disgust. Nothing can erase the pain and shock, it hurts and won’t stop hurting, this, we will have to carry for the rest of our lives.
Exactly ten years ago today, when our dearest Pa was cowardly snatched away, leaving us in distraught and lost, our only comfort was knowing that he stood and died for his ideals.
We thank the Almighty for guidance to see us through this horrible ordeal, another thing that picked us up most was the love and support and prayers. The Solidarity, (will and determination) which was shown when Journalists took to the street of Banjul was like nothing anyone‘s ever seen. Your quest for answers into this unconscionable act was moving to say the least. We recognized familiar faces, colleagues, friends, family members and well-wishers all coming out to show their support. In that dark place we were, you lifted a lamp to lead the way, making us realize that we were not alone in this.
However with every passing year, as hopes of ever getting these monstrous culprits and cohorts off the Streets are dashed away, the numbers of faces we thought would stand up for Deyda gets smaller too. But we thank Almighty for the very few God fearing who after 10 painful years are still behind us some to their own detriment. Some of you have been harassed, intimidated and forced into exile just for defending his name. We cannot thank you enough, and are in debt to you all. When people are scared to be associated with the name DEYDA HYDARA, or are so scared that they feel the need to lie, hide, deny and even abuse others for whatever reason or for whoever.
All Deyda wanted was to be a journalist as he proudly said on the day he was killed “Journalism is my life” (The point 16th December 2004), and an exceptional one he was, he single handed took it upon himself to be a reformer and an advocate for the voiceless, constructively and ethically reported the basic needs and cries of the masses, ranging from agriculture, education and health care. Reflecting on issues where the state, Government bodies, politicians, enablers and facilitators of government fell short of the required standards of a democratically- elected government for and by the people. In an attempt to hold them to account, even suggested ways to improve and be able to get to the heart of the problems with policies the people were struggling with or decisions which didn’t favor the masses. Along the way he generated so many enemies, made some people very uneasy, he was never bothered and he never gave in to any threat, intimidation and was happy to be gunned down at any time. As he reported, following ongoing attacks on media houses and journalists” maybe we are crazy but some of us would be proud to be gunned down or simply be killed for fighting for Press Freedom and Free Expression”(THE Point 17th August 2004)
No matter how hard and unconscionable this is , we thank Allah and take solace in the fact that he had served his purpose in life as his mission (though cut short by ignorant who have no respect for humanity, Democracy, Justice and Free Expression) was a well lived life.
When did we get to be so evil?
When did we become so in humane?
When did our motherland became filled with so much filth?
How did we get here?
How did we get to become so heartless?
When, a dad, husband, uncle, granddad, friend was butchered in cold blood and left for death in a ditch, some people thought it justified enough to celebrate his demise.
This is what our smiling coast is reduced to, filled with animals where smiles have been washed off by the blood of patriots, where we find the need to bring about so much pain, hatred and suffering irrespective of how many families and people get ruined in the process.
Totally different and unfamiliar to the neighborhood and community spirits of the Bathurst our great grandfathers knew and were afforded.
What happen to the communities who supported each other or went out of their way to help each other, from living together, sharing and exchange of interests, alternate school runs and shopping trips even school meetings and enlisting children (yours and your neighbours?)
Where the less privileged kids were taken in for a better prospect in life.
When different tribes will share a home and be living in harmony peace and tranquility like was enjoyed by our grandparents.
What have we got to leave our kids for tomorrow?
Other than transformation of peace for havoc,
Tranquility for unrest
Living as animals with no heart or mind to think for ourselves
People with no morals,
People with no self-respect for themselves or human decency,
People who gag, conspire, plot, gang, against your own people, torture or even kill
How can one be so heartless to look into the eyes of your victims yet go ahead as planned thinking you are untouchable?
All for what, power, money, greed, status and mere concession which never last.
The African Charter to which the Gambia is a signatory has afforded all member states to enjoy the liberties like all human beings. Africans States are to adhere to the Charter but it seems not all do.
We in cooperated in the Charter terms like
Free from anti colonialism and anti neo colonialism,
Intimidation from the West (all intimidation is done by her own people)
Freedom from torture, (yet her people are tortured)
Freedom of Association (people are deprived from joining social groups of their choice)
Freedom of Speech (if this existed, Africa would be a better place today)
The aforementioned (are a few Articles) that have been embedded in the preambles of The African Charter. But it seems that the liberties (if afforded, are only afforded to some people, yet the masses are still denied these and persecuted regularly even tortured and receiving degrading treatment thereby engaging the very Articles proscribed to be afforded to all citizens in all member state.
The Gambia Government has engaged and breached these articles and or exempted some from manifesting their beliefs as was stipulated in the African Charter.
They have failed on so many levels where Deyda is concerned, and are liable for the criminal wrong doing of her citizens and in this investigation fell far short of the standards of any recognized Rule of Law , Democracy or Freedom and Justice that is a fundamental Right to be enjoyed by everyone.
All the Government has done into this matter was to close all doors and avenues, and deny us of Justice into this matter .From the word go, they showed no interest or humanity.
He was assassinated with 3 gun shots, which were heard by the police who were right there but claimed to take the shots to be fireworks. Which is hard to follow as fireworks were prohibited,
He was left for death or to ascertain that he was dead, (how much evil can be a man’s heart)
Demonstration to condemn the killing was limited to journalist only, unlike in Mali and Senegal where turnout was greater, because of that.
We are still after 10 horrid years waiting for an autopsy report, which we are entitled to as it was signed for by a family member. The so called investigation was a sham to say the least, which depicted the victim as causing his own dead, it was repugnant vilifying the victim.
The lists goes on and on, whether by intention or default the Gambia Government has failed in protecting her own and denying us justice. Also letting loose these demons behind this dastardly act to go on killing more. Confidence in the system is lacking, which is paramount to any given society.
When we embarked on our quest 10 years ago, we were only a family lost with utter devastation missing the main piece of a puzzle.
Our dearest Pa was shot 3 times in cold blood
We had no soldiers
We had no guns
We were voiceless
All we had was each other and a lot of faces we thought we could rely on, today when people are scared to be associated with just the name DEYDA HYDARA,
When some people avoid us like the plague,
And some are so scared, they have to lie, hide and deny knowing or even sitting in the same class or chairing a meeting with Deyda.
We thank the Almighty for the very few but loyal God fearing full of integrity, who since 10 years ago have been rallying around us.
You got us here today with steadfastness, you Press, Fight and Push to get us through
You gave us a voice to be heard, a radio and even TV where our calls for justice echo on and on…
Today when some of you are tortured, harassed, intimidated, imprisoned and even forced into exile just for defending DEYDA.
We cannot begin to thank you enough for the solidarity, and moral support shown.
You got Deyda the recognition with endless nominations, A MEMOIR, Living mirror (thanks to uncle DA Jawo and Ahmed Alota for their dedication and determination) they went through a lot of hurdles, had doors shut to their faces by people scared to speak, about the man Deyda was. Again we thanked the very few who were loyal enough to give an account of the man they knew, loved and respected.
A FILM, (we thank with utmost gratitude Article 19 (Free Expression), All other Human Rights Organizations and especially Fatou Jagne Senghore, for her passion, efforts and diligence in making this a success. We also thank Uncle D A Jawo, Tonton Ndiagga Syla and The Senegalese Media for their contribution and all African Journalists and everyone who have contributed one way or another to making this film possible.
The lifetime achievement awards, The Hero of African Journalism Awards,
You call him Hero, Martyr, a champion,
What could be greater than having DEYDA HYDARA written on a plaque in NORMANDY, France a few feet from where President Charles de Gaulle was laid to rest and next to the world war veterans?
No greater joy than this which could be said to be all down to You, You and You, (my uncles, aunts, brothers and sisters of the pen)
In our eyes you are the Heroes and the Martyrs who struggle day in day out to get us here.
We appreciate all your efforts and with profound admiration and appreciation, we salute you all who have used your papers, medium and platforms especially the few on the grounds (who work under extremely hostile climate) and all on line Newspapers in the diaspora. We also thank our nearest and dearest for the prayers and support shown.
Thank you all so very much for keeping DEYDA HYDARA alive in our hearts.
To Pa,
We miss and will always love you. If we had to choose all over again we would be honoured to choose you, for you took the ultimate sacrifice and died for your ideals. Though still in distraught, you have done us proud.
Happy 23rd Anniversary to the Point Newspaper,
It seems like yesterday when you were established, you brought so much joy to Pa his wish was to make you the voice of the voiceless and the oppressed.
We thank uncle Pap Saine, publishers, friends staffs who are bending over backwards to keep his dream alive. May the Almighty reward you all. Thank you, Thank you and Thank you!
I know, you don’t like to hear it and it doesn’t feel like it but please forgive me, and allow me …..
Happy Birthday Aja Mariam Hydara, we pray that you live a long and healthy life to see these rank and files brought to book. Yours is the hardest, as the emptiness is vast and you feel you can never feel normal again; Pa ‘s left huge shoes to fill as he was like no other in all he did and was (A dad, A journalist, a husband a friend and colleague) for he always went out of his way to help and always put the welfare of others before his own) but Alhamdulilah, (Thanks to Allah) for it’s tough but you doing a great job for all we wanted was an extra time with him; as always with grace and dignity you keep us sane. Thank you for putting your pain last and soothing ours.
Finally, on the 10th anniversary of our beloved and dearest Pa, we reinforce our calls to the International Communities, Human Rights, Amnesty International , Article 19, UN, EU,ECOWAS, AU, CPJ ,IFJ, NUJ , MLDI and All specialist Journalists NGOs, RSF, AFP, TAEF, WAJA, GPU, International Penn, Open Society, and all Organizations, Activists, Journalists and all those who believe in Freedom, Justice Free Expression and Press Freedom to join us (after 10 horrid years) to renew our calls for Justice not only for DEYDA HYDARA’s murder but for all African Journalists whose families are enduring the pain and despair of waiting for answers.


It is with regret that the Gambia Consultative Council (GCC) expresses deep disappointment in the recent defection to the AFPRC of dictator and murderer, Yahya Jammeh, of one of its executives members, Mr Falai GCCBaldeh, in charge of Protests and Demonstrations. GCC was clearly blindsided by Mr Baldeh’s actions particularly at a time when nothing, whatsoever, has changed in the political situation at home.
While GCC clearly disagrees with the actions taken by Falai Baldeh, until recently one of the most vociferous critics of the Gambian regime under Yahya Jammeh, each member of the GCC executive enjoys the freewill to make decisions that are in their best personal interest. GCC, therefore, wishes Mr Falai Baldeh well as a member of a regime that continues to wreak so much havoc on Gambian society.
Finally, GCC has nothing further to add to this unfortunate transfer of allegiance from the interest of the suffering Gambian people to Yahya Jammeh, the source of all that suffering. All further clarification on this matter can be addressed directly to Mr Falai Baldeh himself.
The GCC executive