Following the turmoil of a contested presidential election in 2016, The Gambia faced an uncertain future. While the population had high expectations for the political transition, a fragile economy along with the state’s poor record in providing basic public services threatened the country’s stability. Peaceful parliamentary elections in 2017 paved the way for policymakers to restore fiscal sustainability and lay the groundwork for the country’s economic recovery. The European Union has supported the democratic transition from the outset with an ambitious budget support program that includes complementary support measures implemented by a technical assistance team…DAI
Thank you to all the jurors of the International Photography Awards (IPA), 2020, for honoring our multimedia series, ‘Gambia – victims, and resisters‘ This honorable mention – in the Deeper Perspective category – is yet another step towards reaching a wider audience with this body of work, particularly for all the victims, resisters, and survivors who have been part of this ongoing project. We thank them for sharing their experiences with us.
From 1994 -2017 President Yahya Jammeh ruled the Gambia, West Africa as his fiefdom, crushing dissent and opposition with brutality. His hit squad and security services carried out tortures, assassinations and acts of sexual violence with impunity – journalists were gunned down and disappeared, students shot in cold blood, and even his cousins were murdered on his order. The portraits and collected testimonies are part of an ongoing project to share the stories of the victims and resisters and to be a tool of advocacy in the international campaign to bring Jammeh and his cadre to justice. Gambia – victims, and resisters’ by Jason Florio & Helen Jones-Florio
We are thrilled to be chosen for The Photoville FENCE, 2020, with ‘Gambia – victims and resisters‘ – an ongoing multimedia body of work that began back in 2016. With the blessing of those we have photographed and filmed, our intention has always been to share their very personal and traumatic stories far and wide. Heartfelt thanks to the FENCE jurors and the Photoville team for helping us to achieve this.
‘The Photoville FENCE is a year-round public photography project exhibited in major parks and downtowns across North America. Featuring over 90 photographers annually, the exhibition brings compelling visual stories into the public realm, and to a wide and diverse audience.
The 9th edition will be displayed in Atlanta, Brooklyn, Calgary, Denver, Durham, Houston, Metro (Fargo, W. Fargo and Moorhead), New Orleans, Sarasota, Seattle and Winchester!‘ Read/see more: The Photoville FENCE
President Yahya Jammeh ruled The Gambia with an iron fist fortwenty two years after taking control of the country with a coup in July1994. With Jammeh’s exile after electoral defeat in 2016, a Truth, Reconciliation and Reparations Commission (TRRC) was set up to look into his regime’s abuses. The TRRC along with victims families and local media at Yundum army Barracks where the bodies of seven murdered soldiers were exhumed. The soldiers were murdered by soldiers loyal to Jammeh for being allegedly part of a counter coup in November 1994. Witnesses say eleven soldiers were buried at the barracks, so far only seven have been found. Along with the bone fragments, electrical cables were also found that were used to bind the victims hands. The only clothing found were underwear, corroborating witness testimonies that the men were stripped almost naked before being shot.
From 1994 -2017 President Yahya Jammeh ruled the Gambia, West Africa, as his own personal fiefdom, crushing dissent, and opposition, with brutality.
His personal hit squad and intelligence agency carried out tortures, and assassinations with impunity – journalists were gunned down and disappeared, ministers were jailed, students shot in cold blood, and even his own brother and sister were murdered on his orders.
With Jammeh’s 2016 election defeat, he went into exile after a standoff with regional forces, and the victims of his regime started to come forward.
Cast your vote for the People’s Choice Winner of the 9th edition of the Photoville FENCE! Help decide the artist who will receive a Leica camera package and a yearlong mentorship with the Photoville team.
Individuals may cast one vote per day from now through January 2021.
Header image: Gambian student, Ami Lowe.
“I grew up not knowing the love of a father. I was only three years old when he disappeared, so I don’t remember him. I only know him through what people have told me, that he was a good man, and some say he was a hero.” Amie Lowe