Witness laments ill health from drinking concoction

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By AWA SECKA JAWARA

Jainaba Sonko, another survivor of the 2009 ‘witch hunting’ exercise in The Gambia has told the Truth, Reconciliation and Reparation Commission (TRRC) that the concoction she drank caused her to suffer and could not regain her health.

“From then I suffered, trembling and I could not regain my health,” she decried.

She said the ‘’witch hunters’’ met her with her friend Jonyi Sonko, whiles they were from the farm.

The 2009 ‘witch hunting’ was an exercise alleged spearheaded by former President Yahya Jammeh which led to the abduction many people who were coerced to drink hallucinogenic concoction among other inhuman treatment following which several were reported dead and many others living with abnormal health condition.

The witness who is a native of Essau, North Bank Region said the ‘witch hunters’ claimed to have medicine and asked them to go with them.

She explained that a man who wore red clothes with mirrors and horns smelled their hands, accused them of being witches and ordered them to board a vehicle to wait there.

Jainaba said the man accompanied by Green Boys and paramilitary personnel pointed a mirror at people and declared them witches and wizards.

The witness added that when they arrived at Kololi they were taken to the late Baba Jobe’s compound where she was taken to a room and her head was covered with a plastic bag.

The 83-year-old woman said she was moved to another room and forced to sleep on a wet bare floor for three days.

She told the Commission that she was given a concoction made of a hallucinogenic plant locally called ‘Kubejaro’ which she drank twice.

She said biscuits from the former President Yahya Jammeh were mixed with the concoction.

She narrated that her friend who is dead now went through the same suffering, that when they came back home people keep away from them and even avoided eating with them just because they were accused of being witches.

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