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Jammeh ruled The Gambia with a totalitarian grip for 22 years after seizing power in an army coup in 1994.After he suffered a shock defeat in the 2016 presidential election, he refused to relinquish power.These include promoting healing and reconciliation, addressing the impunity of previous members of government, establishing the fate of disappeared victims, allowing victims to tell their account of violations, and to grant reparations where appropriate.So far, the public has heard from current and former members of armed forces over an alleged counter-coup plot against Jammeh early in his rule. But even if more victims come forward and speak out, and more human rights violations are revealed during future testimony from both victims and abusers, pursuing legal consequences against Jammeh is likely to prove very difficult, if not impossible.Toufah has said that she hopes her revelations encourage other victims to come forward and share their stories.Her plea has been echoed by the Attorney General who has praised her actions and asked others to speak out.

One reason for this is that the Truth and Reconciliation Commission does not have the power to prosecute Jammeh, or any other individual for human rights abuses.As part of her duties as a beauty queen, she was called to a meeting with Jammeh, who began to shower her with presents and money.After a sexual attack in the presidential residence, and fears for her future safety, she disguised herself in a burka and fled across the border to Senegal.She is expected to give testimony to the Commission later in the year.In graphic detail, Toufah explained to Human Rights Watch how she became a target of the president’s unwanted attentions when, at the age of 18, she won a state-sponsored beauty pageant.

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