Gambian Vice President resigns as Jammeh remains defiant

Yahya Jammeh

In what is clearly the biggest indication that the President of The Gambia, Yayha Jammeh, has lost control of his government, the country’s Vice president, Isatou Njie-Saidy, on Wednesday resigned.

She announced her resignation hours before official end of the tenure of Mr. Jammeh’s administration as the country’s political impasse gets worse over the refusal of Mr Jammeh to relinquish power to the President-elect Adama Barrow who was scheduled to be sworn in on Thursday.

The country’s minister of higher education, Aboubacar Senghore, who was appointed to the position last July, also resigned on Wednesday saying he cannot serve in the post beyond the tenure of the outgoing president.

“Given my strong religious and legal background, I feel it is now ethically and legally speaking time to step down as minister of Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology and Religious Affairs as the constitutional mandate of the current government expires today, Wednesday 18th January 2017,” he wrote in his resignation letter to Mr Jammeh.

The resignation of Mr. Senghore, who was the country’s former foreign affairs minister, brings the number of minister that have resigned from Mr Jammeh’s cabinet since the political logjam to eight.

A source who asked not to be named for fear of being arrested, told PREMIUM TIMES that the increasing resignation of ministers may have forced Mr. Jammeh to dissolve his cabinet.

PREMIUM TIMES has not been able to verify the if Mr. Jammeh has indeed dissolved his cabinet.

Having lost all legal avenue to stop the inauguration of Mr. Barrow, the Gambia president, relying on a motion by the parliament, controlled by his party, declared a 90-day state of emergency, which effectively extended his hold on power.

The situation in the tiny West African country has become dire after the failure of a team of leaders from the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS, failed to convince Mr. Jammeh to allow for peaceful transition.

ECOWAS has since prepared troops drawn from countries in the region including Nigeria to forcibly remove Mr. Jammeh from office.

Reports indicated that a Nigerian warship was already sailing towards the country on Monday.

On Wednesday, thousands of Western tourists trying to leave the country before the expected deployment of the regional force, gathered at Gambia’s international airport.

The BBC also reported that Senegalese troops had moved closer to the Gambian border on Wednesday.


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  • TTT news centre

    WHERE I STAND – President Yahya Jammeh of Gambia

    “Let me make very clear, we are ready to defend this country against any aggression. If Ecowas did
    not back down the impasse will continue with the risk of escalation into a military confrontation. What
    we are simply and rightfully asking for is to return to the polls and allow the Gambians to elect who they
    want to be their president in a free and fair election.

    What is clearly incontrovertible is the decision of ECOWAS to implement the results of the December
    1st, 2016 election results by whatever means possible. It is totally illegal as it violates the principle of
    non-interference in the internal affairs of member states, which is an entrenched clause in the
    Ecowas treaty. ‘It is in effect a declaration of war and an insult to our Constitution.

    It is therefore absolutely unacceptable. This blatant, partial and one-dimensional
    approach clearly indicates that the role of Ecowas is not predicated on the pursuit
    of justice in the resolution of this stalemate”.

    ……………President Yahya Jammeh of Gambia

    (January 1st, 2017)

    • adolfs01

      Mumu you be. Someone that has been power for 22 years cannot setup supreme court judges and you think he deserves to be there for additional single minute.

      • Al

        Abeg give him some slap

    • JOHN

      The Vice President and nine ministers have resigned as at today sighting the fact that the tenure of Jammeh’s government constitutionally ends today. But evil Jammeh thinks he can intimidate mankind to illegally remain in government. He should be arrested and tried for treason or he must be killed if he will not allow peaceful transition. Adama Barrow is constitutionally The Gambia President from Thursday, January 19, 2017.

    • Obosi Warrior

      I can see you wearing your Ipod thinking cap are write your bull crap. To people like you, election must be re-conducted until Jammeh wins it, or the soccer match should be replayed because your team did not win. Mba-nu!! It is not done like that. It is called FAIR PLAY, win or loose you accept the result and move on, prepare for next round.

      It is already late for Mumu Jammeh, he was clever by half. Let us wait until tomorrow.

      Ka Chineke Mezie Okwu!

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  • S. O. Noble

    Excuse me, Sir!

    I live in Nigeria. I have not heard President Buhari or his usually incompetent Ministers announce
    a set of internal security measures inside Nigeria. This is a terrible blunder. A decision to attack
    a foreign country means that foreign country and its own allies have a right to retaliate with any
    deadly counter-attack which does not need to be infantry-based. Is Muhamadu Buhari really an
    army-general in truth? Believe me, I can’t see any such credentials in him – either in the battles
    against Boko Haram inside Nigeria; or, in this now imminent military invasion of a foreign country.

    • JOHN

      Please cut it off. The right thing for ECOWAS, AU, UN and the international community to do now is to forcefully remove that imposter Jammeh who is a terrorist and so wants to spill blood. His own blood should be spilled instead.

      • Saladin Cassandra

        @disqus_XSRplMUXXT:disqus

        I think there is a road not taken. But it is too late now to suggest any bright idea.

        The minds of Ecowas Leaders is concentrated on war but there may be no victor.

        • The oneNigeria

          There won’t be one single bullet shot tonite .Gambia has only 3500 military personnel and they are not fighting for him .They are waiting for 12 tonite to overthrow him

        • Paul Irumundomon

          This tiny country, is just two million people, what do they have to fight, nothing and this man will pay a heavy price.

    • The oneNigeria

      The president has the mandate of the ECOWAS and the UN

    • Dan maikoko

      Relax Noble, Gambia is no threat to any one in terms of military might. In fact Pres. Jammeh cannot afford a flight ticket to Abuja let alone send a commando force to attack. If you have been to the Gambia you will understand. You can shout from the northern side of its border and somebody on the southern end will hear you.

  • Chukwu

    What happened to overambitious African politicians like Samuel Doe, Siad Barry, Mobutu Sese Seko and Mamuar Gaddafi will soon happen to Jammeh. It’s only a matter of time.

    • Epsilon_Delta

      Please remove Gaddafi from your list, the west destroyed one of the last thriving African nations.

      • Paul Irumundomon

        Thriving in one family and the cabals they have down there. The pictures shows just that. Hope they can continue to go down that path. This one will be worse, because is going to be African law and style to throw him out.

      • Olufemi Oba Bolaji

        God bless you

      • Sir Louis

        True.

      • CeeCee1818

        How? It’s his people who killed him.

        • Dan maikoko

          Yep! and now those who killed him were either consumed by the war or out of the country in exile. Libya is a mess and there is no hope of normalcy in the foreseeable future. Libyan people are begging for ghaddafi now.

          • zacchaeus Akinleye

            That’s untrue. Libya with all the chaos is a better place without a tyrant like Qaddafi. Propaganda of Libya’s progress under the dictator are sheer wistfulness.

          • GbemigaO

            Seriously, you believed that. Libya is a real failed state example! The central government inky controlled Tripoli. How can you say it to s a better place now?

      • Chukwu

        I won’t. After 41 years in power and your man (Gaddafi) still clung on, I think he deserved what he hot.

  • olutade

    He who comes by the gun must definitely go by the gun.

  • Olatunde

    Those who make peaceful change impossible make violent change inevitable.