Gambia UPDATE: Radio station manager languishing in NIA detention

The notorious National Intelligence Agency (NIA) in The Gambia is holding Abdoulie Ceesay, journalist and managing director of Taranga FM, a community radio station in The Gambia.

Ceesay was released from NIA custody following his July 2 detention by the NIA. He was held for 12 days before being abducted on again July 17.

According to sources, Ceesay and his friend had visited a lady friend in Latrikunda German, a suburb of Banjul. Following their arrival at the house of the lady, Ceesay went into the house, leaving his friend outside.

The MFWA’s sources said that after waiting for a while without any appearance from Ceesay, the friend went looking for Ceesay but could not find him.

The friend later went to inform Ceesay’s family and together they all returned to the house of the lady friend, who said Ceesay had been forced into a vehicle. One of the men was reportedly wearing a police uniform.

Even though reports on the abduction are sketchy, The Gambia Press Union (GPU) confirmed that Ceesay is in NIA custody.

The GPU issued the following statement on Facebook: “The manager for Taranga FM, Alhagie Abdoulie Ceesay, who went missing since Friday 17 July, is being held by the National Intelligence Agency. The young man was this afternoon escorted to his home by three men in a white pick up for a search in his house. He confirmed (to his family) that he is in the custody of the NIA in Banjul. The Gambia Press Union will take appropriate measures on this case….”

The MFWA is worried about the continuous detention of Ceesay. We are particularly worried about his detention because many persons have disappeared following their arrest by the NIA. The NIA has also tortured several journalists, human rights defenders and citizens in custody. We are urging the NIA to release Ceesay or charge him for court.

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