Sunday, May 15, 2011

Daily News Reporter Detained While Investigating Killing Involving Anti-Drug Officers

Police in Banjul on Monday briefly detained The Daily News’ judicial correspondent who was investigating the killing of a man allegedly tortured by four officers of National Drug Enforcement Agency (NDEA).
Mr Cherno Alieu Suwareh was allegedly tortured to death by four NDEA officers: Eku Grant, Ebou Lowe, Abdoulie E. Jallow and Matarr Sey Jawo. The four men are being detained.
Mr Baba Sillah was probing into this murder incident when he was arrested and detained for about half an hour on the orders of the station officer at police headquarters in Banjul, who found the journalist taking details of the incident from a diary officer after the police spokesperson declined to comment.
“My notebook was seized and handed over to one female police officer who tore the cover of my book where I wrote the names of the suspected killers,” Mr Sillah said.
Baba said, his notebook was searched through and after no information regarding the NDEA officials was found, he was released.
When contacted, the police spokesperson, Yorro Mballow said he was not aware of Mr Sillah’s arrest and detention.
“Sillah has no one to blame but himself. If he needs any information, he should have contacted me,” the police spokesperson said.
However, Mr Sillah said, it is a practice that journalists obtain details of newsworthy incidents from the police spokesperson and Mballow has been doing it on other cases, but refused to do it this time.

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