By Amadou Jadama
The police in Brikama, Tuesday, arrested a man who sent death threats to Yusupha Darboe, a news presenter on Star FM. The man is identified as Bakary Jammeh, a resident of Kotu Quarry.Mr Darboe who confirmed the arrest to The Standard, went to Brikama Police Station where Station Officer Jammeh ordered one of his men to bring the suspect from the detention cell. SO Jammeh then asked him to explain what he reportedly said to the Star FM presenter.Bakary Jammeh tersely said, “I just advised him about what happened in Rwanda.” Despite the station officer’s order for him to exactly rehash the threating words he made to Darboe, Jammeh remained tight-lipped.
Station Officer Jammeh told The Standard: “We are going to take him to Kotu Quarry where he is living to ask about his father and make further investigations because we don’t believe that he is a Gambian.”A fortnight ago, this paper reported that Yusupha Darboe alleged that he received a death threat from an unidentified caller. According to Mr Darboe, the incident happened on Thursday, about 7pm when he received a call from someone who identified himself with a name he could not remember but gave his address as Kotu Quarry. Darboe said the caller made reference to a story carried by The Standard captioned, “African lawyers vow to bring Jammeh to justice in Ghana” which he reviewed and translated in Mandinka on his popular afternoon news programme.
“The caller angrily told me that all what I was reading was a lie and that one day they will come after me,” Darboe had alleged.He said he tried to explain to the caller that he was merely reading a story written by the newspaper but the caller insisted he did not care, further saying that they know where he, Darboe, lives and one day they will go for him.
The head of Star FM, Alpha Karaga, said it was the second time that one of his staff members was sent a death threat with Sarjo Barrow receiving a similar threat last year.He said they reported the cases to the Serious Crime Unit at Police headquarters in Banjul as well as Brikama Police Station.Mr Karaga condemned the threats, saying Star FM Radio is not a political radio and is not associated with any political party.
“The news items are reviewed before being presented on air. They are from newspapers and not written by us. People should not have grudges against the media even though we cannot satisfy all Gambians, and we try as much as possible to make sure that all the news are factual and balanced,” he noted.Karaga finally called on government to help and protect the media, but said the incident will never deter them from doing their work as they have a duty to give reliable information to the people.