Captain Bubacarr Bah should simply resign from the Army - Konteh
Captain Bubacarr Bah should simply resign from the Army... Appearing before the TRRC, the Army Captain Bubacarr Bah made a chilling confession - the first of it's kind at the Commission - detailing his involvement in the brutal torture of Mr. Omar Jallow (OJ), breaking the statesman's eye socket among other physical injuries in October 1995. Captain Bah attributed his callous actions to his age at the time, experience and gullibility. He claimed to have been brainwashed by the late Lieutenant Almamo Manneh into believing that OJ was actively conspiring with Americans to bring mercenaries into the country to dislodge the Military Junta.
While commending Captain Bah for fully cooperating with this important Commission, mustering the courage in admitting his barbaric roles and humility in seeking forgiveness, I would like to address some of the unfortunate parts of his behavior. Since his enlistment in the Gambia Armed Forces, Captain Bah has had various opportunities in military trainings and responsibilities some of which involved overseas courses all designed to make him a better, disciplined and professional career soldier/officer. He spent considerable amount of time as an Instructor at the Army Training School where he had direct connection with the newly enlisted soldiers to instill in them the values, expectations and traditions of a conventional Army. In all of these considerations, Captain Bah's age and maturity levels were never a problem. He was never denied a promotion or not given assignments on the account that he was young. In his 20s, Captain Bah's physical and mental abilities and trainings were up to par to make good command and personnel decisions even in the most volatile situations. So, using his age as a possible excuse/factor in his unlawful assault on OJ does not deserve consideration. Prior to this event, Captain Bah had a first hand experience of the bloody lies and deceit of the AFPRC Junta. According to his own account, in the early morning of November 11, 1994, they were informed that some mercenaries were poised to launch armed aggression on their barracks which he later found to be untrue. In fact, it became clear that the so called attack on the barracks was part of the Junta's deadly plan to eliminate perceived threats from the Army. Captain Bah lost some of his colleagues in the process including Faal, his Adjutant, whom he fought alongside in that early morning to defend their barracks. The events of that morning and its aftermath should have polished Captain Bah's experience against gullible behaviors. He failed to do that! Again, inexperience and gullibility are not legitimate grounds/excuses for Bah's wanton violation of OJ's fundamental rights. Captain Bah also invoked circumstances that prevailed in the country during Yahya Jammeh's presidency as some of the factors that prevented him from personally reaching out to OJ and apologize. Yahya Jammeh was left the country in January 2017 and despite Captain Bah's claims of consuming guilt and regrets over the years, he made no particular effort to apologize OJ in the past 2 years. Contrary to Captain Bah's explanation, I hold the belief that not only did he not regret his brutal acts, he also thought he wouldn't be recognized and exposed by his victim as many of his accomplices are either dead or in exile with slim chance of testifying against him. It is my position that Gambia Armed Forces' Command should not discharge Captain Bah from the Army as doing so may not unfairly compromise cooperation from witnesses but could preempt the Commission's findings. Therefore, Captain Bah should just be honorable enough to tender his resignation from the Army in view of the unforgettable stain he'd caused to his uniform, Army, country and family.