The indigenous people of Brufut have never concealed their opposition to Taf’s acquisition of vast chunk of their lands.
Almost two decades ago, the huge area of land was allocated to real estate developer Mustapha Njie by the government of The Gambia but the move stirred anger and strong feeling of opposition among villagers.
They agitated quietly because remember Brufut could’ve been reduced to debris if they’d gone ahead with the planned street protests.
It was the zenith of dictatorship and any perceived communal recalcitrance to the dictator had a potential of being crushed ruthlessly.
Our editor-in-chief was in the house of the late Brufut Alkalo Alhaji Kalifa Sano alongside his son Yankuba for more than two hours discussing this ‘Taf Land Grab’ and other issues.
But the late Alkalo, who was among key traditional rulers that went to State House in 1996 to tell Jammeh to de-uniform and contest in the general elections, was keen to prove that he had no business with the land transfer to Taf.
He was also adamant in his rejection of being part of a scheme that ‘forced’ compensation on the people of Brufut after their land was allocated to the now rich businessman.
Meanwhile when one looks at the ingredients of this Taf-Brufut land conundrum, it would appear the villagers has a case to take to the courts.
But how about Taf Commission where villagers would be called as witnesses to testify in hearings on how their lands have been acquired by Taf.
Taf will be then subpoenaed to give his own account.
Other witnesses from the lands department and newspaper articles could also help in determining whether the indigenous people’s lands were indeed being grabbed by Mr.Njie.