The regional troops sent into The Gambia as part of Operation Restore Democracy by leaders of Economic Community of West African States have arrested a non-duty soldier of Gambia Armed Forces with a pistol inside the main mosque in Banjul where new President Adama Barrow was performing Friday prayers.
Major Salifu Ngom, the spokesperson of the ECOMIG forces confirmed to The Torch that the regional forces have made the arrest but added that the soldier has been handed to the police for further investigation.
A State Guard soldier who prefers anonymity has identified the man as a military Sergeant Baboucarr Njie from Medina Sering Mass.
The soldier, who our source said, was a plane cloth military officer is currently being investigated by the Gambian police.
The incident took place at Banjul’s main King Fahd mosque where the Gambian leader had joined Muslim worshippers for congregational prayers on Friday afternoon.
Security sources say ECOMIG are not ruling out foul play but Major Ngom told The Torch on the phone that he could not release further details since he was in Farafenni in the North Bank.
A police source from Major Crime Unit in Banjul who does not want to be named told The Torch today that the soldier is being investigated and that there will be prosecution if the political class did not intervene.
The police source said all the armed soldiers have been asked to put down their guns and the man “had no reason to be going around with his”.
The Barrow administration has been emphasizing reconciliation since winning elections on December 1 and it is less likely that there will be prosecution.
The security of the Gambian president is currently under the protection of the ECOMIG soldiers and all Gambian army officials have been removed from State House.