OPINION: Africa’s Political Curse: Why Gambia’s Jammeh Nears a Sour Exit

By: Daraus Bahikire

At a rank of Lieutenant, sildenafil Yahya Jammeh with a group of young officers in the Gambian National Army captured power from the then head of state Sir Dawda Jawara in a military coup by taking control of key facilities in the capital city, more about Banjul.

The coup took place without significant bloodshed and executed with little resistance. Identifying itself as the Armed Forces Provisional Ruling Council (AFPRC), approved with 29-year-old Jammeh selected as the chairman.

The AFPRC suspended the constitution, sealed the borders, and implemented a curfew. While Jammeh’s new government justified the coup by decrying CORRUPTION and LACK OF DEMOCRACY under Jawara’s regime, the castigators of the coup also army personnel complained of low salaries, poor living conditions, and unfair promotion in the military.

Having served in presidency for four terms, in 2016 elections, he was defeated by Adama Barrow leading a coalition of opposition parties. Jammeh stated that he would not contest the result.

Although he initially conceded defeat, on 9 December 2016, he rejected the result citing “unacceptable abnormalities.” He then filed a petition with the Supreme Court of the Gambia to contest the result.

The African Union among other regional bodies have vehemently stated that it would stop recognizing Jammeh as president as of 19 January 2017.

He attempted to have Barlow’s inauguration blocked, but the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court has refused to rule on the matter.

It is thus evident that the way Jammeh overthrew Dawda can possibly turn out to be “better” than how he is likely to find his office exit.

Now, one wonders why most African heads of states will always wait for a bloodshed to hand over power to the compromise of native constitutions? Isn’t this really a curse for Africa?

Let African leaders evolve a more humanitarian and philanthropic approach to ascending in and exiting from power instead of resorting to bloodshed approaches that have kept Africa in black spots of rebellions and coups while the African child remains hopeless of their future lives .

Love and serve Africans.

The writer is a communications officer at the Ministry of Information and Communications Technology (MoICT)


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