The Ghanaian man who survived the 2005 alleged massacre of 51 West African migrants has detailed how one of the migrants’ arm was chopped off with a cutlass by a soldier as they were being transported in a forest.

Martin Kyere,41, began his testimony before the Gambia’s Truth, Reconciliation and Reparation Commission on Monday.

Martin Kyere the sole survivor of the 2005 massacre of 50 west African migrants by paramilitary soldiers calling the Junglers

Mr Kyere detailed how he travelled with other West African migrants to Senegal where they were introduced to a man named Charles Taylor, who told them he was an American national.

While trying to make their way to Europe through a boat, they got stranded in the north-west of the Gambian waters, where they were apprehended by some police officers and taken to Barra police station. They were ferried to Banjul by the Gambian navy and later taken to Serrekunda.

He said they were taken on cars to a forest and on their way there the car he was in with other Ghanaian migrant called Kojo, hit a sheep. 

The soldiers stopped the car and put the dead sheep in the car between him and Kojo.

“The officer said you are going to travel with the dead sheep. Definitely we have knowledge about what he was saying. So, in the forest we branch off that road where the pickup picked the death sheep [between] 11-2pm,” Martin told the Commission.

“So, we get to a place where the driver stopped the car and two soldiers came for our luggage and there was a valley. 

He said the migrants were piled on top of each other with their hands tied behind their backs. 

“Ajamo was down [on the ground and ] everybody lied on him … he was complaining about his chest and he complained to one officer with long machete that he should help him turn [his sprained arm], the man [officer] used the cutlass to cut it off and [then] asked him which one is more painful,” he added.

His testimony continues. 

Reporting by Adama Makasuba

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