Gambia’s dictator Yahya Jammeh has fired his Lands and Local government Minister Momodou Aki Bayo, with immediate effect, the Freedom Newspaper can report. Mr. Bayo, received his marching orders today shortly after reporting to work. No reason was given for Mr. Bayo’s removal.
This followed a peace mission Mr. Bayo led on behalf of dictator Jammeh to solve the mounting tensions in Kartong, where the village’s youths protested against the illegal sand mining taking place in their locality. Mr. Bayo denounced the conduct of the youths. He went as far as telling the youths that the Jammeh government wouldn’t condone unruly behavior or any form of extremism. House Speaker Abdoulie Bojang and other top government functionaries were at the Kartong meeting.
This is the second time that Momodou Aki Bayo has been fired from Cabinet. Mr. Bayo was the oldest Minister in the Jammeh Cabinet. His former Ministry was a subject of media exposure by Freedom Radio Gambia this past week. We reported on air that officials at the Lands Ministry were in the business of foot-dragging on property lease applications. That, some corrupt officials would even ask for a bribe before they will issue lease to applicants. That, lease applications were piled up at the Ministry unattended. That, Physical Planning officials would also ask for a bribe before they would issue house sketch plans to homeowners.
Meanwhile, the sacked Local government Minister, has been replaced by Momodou Lamin Gibba. Mr. Gibba is the former Managing Director of The Gambia Ports Authority. Gibba was fired from the ports about a year ago. He has bounced back in the autocratic Jammeh system.
The Lands Ministry is an extension of the Jammeh State House. The dictator has overtime transformed the Ministry as his personal property. Jammeh uses the said Ministry to legitimize his ongoing land grabbing and stealing.
With ML Gibba at the helm of affairs at the Lands Ministry, observers noted that Jammeh’s long ambitious plan to finally annex the Lands Ministry into his business empire would be accomplished. Jammeh owns many estates, farms and properties across the country. He was aided by the sacked Lands Minister Momodou Aki Bayo, to acquire such properties illegally.
Written By A Staff Writer