Illegal Detention & Police Brutality…

Release Abass Abdulai Jalloh Now

By Sall Tee Jay

The recent arrest and illegal detention of Abass Abdulai Jalloh by officers of the Sierra Leone Police have raised a public outcry by human rights activists and civil society organizations calling for his unconditional release.
Times SL has been following the issue for three days now but no word from the Sierra Leone Police as to the reason for the arrest and detention of Abass Abdulai Jalloh. It is understood that the arrest and detention of Jalloh could not be unconnected to his campaign and write-ups against bad governance coupled with some of his publications in various newspapers protecting Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) members in the country.
Sierra Leone’s Government is yet to legislate any law that protects LGBT apart from the country’s 1991 Constitution that guaranty the rights of every citizen.
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender have no place in Sierra Leone as the majority usually frown on them in society. People who belong to these groups are being stigmatized, harassed, and molested in public places. The two major religions ( Islam and Christianity) have also condemned such acts.
In 2002, former President Kabbah attempted to legislate a document that guaranty the rights and protection of people that belong to the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender( LGBT)Club but that document faced stiff resistance in the cabinet. Sheiks and Pastors have been using their platform to denounce the act which at the time got wild condemnation.
Therefore, Jalloh’s arrest and detention have been interpreted to mean a complete violation of his human rights and rights to free speech as enshrined in the 1991 Constitution and also in the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1945.
It is understood that the house of Jalloh was raided, ransacked, and put under siege by state security personnel at the time they went to effect his arrest.
All these are what make up bad governance. Past and successive Governments have been silencing critics who have refused to sleep with them in the same bed. Journalists, civil rights activists, and opposition politicians have all suffered similar fates at the hands of the past and successive Governments. It is therefore a case of injustice for a government to lock up a journalist for being critical of bad governance. Abass Abdulai Jalloh should be released now.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *