(JollofNews) – Authorities in the Gambia have arrested the head imam of Darsilami mosque in the Lower Fulladu West District, Central River Region.
Imam Cherno Gassama was arrested last Monday at his residence by an officer of the feared National Intelligence Agency (NIA) and another police officer from Brikamaba post. He was later taken away on a motorcycle to Brikamaba before being transferred to the Jangjangbureh prison where he is being held incommunicado.
The Gambian regime is yet to comment on his arrest or charge him with any criminal offence.
Although the Gambia is a Muslim dominated country where imams and religious scholars are revered, they have in recent years being targeted for harassment and detention by the government of Yahya Jammeh.
In 2004, the imam of Banjul International Airport, Alhayba Hydara, was arrested and detained incommunicado at Jangjangbureh prisons for criticising the government’s handling of hajj operations.
In December 2012, Imam Baba Leigh, a prominent Muslim cleric and activist, was arrested and detained incommunicado for five months after he publicly condemned the execution of nine inmates at Mile II central prison in August 2012.
Last year, the Caliph General of Darsilameh Sangajor, Muhideen Hydara, was arrested and detained for many days for observing Eid prayers on a different day.