Gambian photographer detained for six days

Plainclothes officers of the Gambia’s National Intelligence Agency (NIA) arrested Pa Sulay Jadama on June 20, 2013, at the premises of the Banjul Magistrates’ Court and detained him incommunicado for six days, according to news reports.

Jadama, a freelance photographer, had been taking pictures of ex-Attorney General Lamin Jobarteh and ex-Solicitor General Pa Harry Jammeh as they arrived at court, where they faced trial on a 10-count criminal charge.

The NIA denied having custody of Jadama, but then released him on June 26, 2013. The Media Foundation for West Africa reported that the journalist’s detention ran counter to the Gambia’s constitution, which allows only a detention period of 72 hours without charge.

The NIA seized the data card in Jadama’s camera and ordered him to remain silent about his detention, the report said.