Thursday, October 6

Inhabitable Conditions of Some Detention Cells Is A Challenge

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Police IG Sanyang

By: Kebba AF Touray

The Inspector General of the Gambia Police Force Abdoulie Sanyang, told the members of the Human Rights and Constitutional Matters Committee of the Legislature, that the inhabitable conditions of some detention cells are a challenge for his force.
IGP Sanyang said this yesterday, during his appearance before the committee, to give an update to the committee, on human rights status in the Gambia.

He also told the committee that a recent closure of some was as a result, whilst plans are underway to build model stations that are more human rights friendly.

“Communal cooperation and preservation evidence against Police is also a challenge. Over detention resultant of COVID-19 test protocol is also a challenge, and logistic and lack of digitalization of complaint system impede work”, he said.

He added that capacity building is also another challenge, which is confronting them, albeit plans are afoot to structure model stations.
“In our quest for compliance to Human Right, the police renamed the Unit Compliant and Discipline to Human Rights and Professional Standard Unit, to reflect, receive and handle complaint against police in their official capacities”, he told the committee members.

He also informed the HR Committee that the independence of the unit, is directly answerable to the IGP, which is deliberate, to ensure less interference, swiftness regardless of the name, rank of officer so alleged or complaint against.

“Further to our compliance, the IGP directive N.05/2021 was developed to reinforce and empower investigations against police outing punitive measures (reprimand, transfer, CB, demotion, discharge, dismissal etc.)”, IGP Sanyang averred.

He continued that the Police-GIZ partnership, is working on a digitalized complaint mechanism to make the unit more proactive, robust and accessible.

“The office is also decentralized with monitoring officers for quick and efficient service of aggrieved persons”, he lamented.
Despite poor equipment, logistic, he said that the unit is mostly on field patrols, unannounced visit, spot check, with a view to confirm compliance, but also to rectify and or undo excesses and wrongs by the police.

He stated that sharing of guidelines and instruction manual from partner, such as NHRC,GIZ and DCAF, coupled with training and sensitization sessions also enhances compliance.

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