The Gambian government has started working with Ecowas to set up a special court to try crimes committed under ex-president Yahya Jammeh. 

“The government, through the ministry of justice is currently working with Exowas towards setting up a Hybrid Court which would prosecute crimes committed during (the) Jammeh regime,” the ministry of justice said in a statement on Friday. 

The government said the court would be established in Gambia, working in cooperation with internationals mandated by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), which played a pivotal role in the democratic transition.

“The government is working tirelessly to come up with an implementation plan which will be launched during the first quarter of this year, in the form of an international stakeholder/donor conference,” said Justice Minister Dawda Jallow.

“I am proud to report that, the government has finalised consultations and has drafted the Victims Reparations Bill to create an independent body to administer reparations for victims,” he added.

Last year, the government endorsed the findings of the Truth, Reconciliation and Reparations Commission (TRRC) which uncovered alleged atrocities committed under Jammeh’s regime, from the murder of political opponents to disappearances, rape and torture.

The commission estimated that between 240 and 250 people were killed during Jammeh’s rule, with the former leader among 70 people set to be prosecuted.

Jammeh is currently exiled in Equatorial Guinea where he fled to after losing to Adama Barrow in the 2016 presidential election. 

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