Highly placed sources at the Immigration Department said the Gambia Democratic Congress Party (GDC) Leader Mama Kandeh, has been denied Diplomatic Passport by the government of Adama Barrow. Mr. Kandeh, who applied a for Diplomatic Passport, in the early days of Adama Barrow’s government, had his application denied. No reason was given for the denial. This is the second time that Mama Kandeh, has been denied Diplomatic Passport. His previous application under Jammeh’s rule, was also denied.

The Immigration Department is under the auspices of the Ministry of Interior.  Interior Minister Mai Fatty, was already in office, when Mama Kandeh, filed his application for Diplomatic Passport.  The Immigration Department insiders said Kandeh’s application was denied forthwith. Although, Kandeh did not receive any formal letter from the Immigration Department stating the reason(s) for the denial, said our source.

Mr. Kandeh wanted to exercise his right as a citizen and the leader of a political party to apply for a Diplomatic Passport. The issuance of passport is not a right, but a privilege under our laws.  But the former Jimara MP, had decided to apply for a Diplomatic Passport, under Barrow’s government. The new government refused to issue him with one. He is not making noise over the denial though, said our source. 

“Mama Kandeh’s application for Diplomatic Passport, has been denied by our office. This was during Pa Mboob’s leadership as DG.  He applied during Mai Fatty’s tenure as Interior Minister. I am not sure if Mai Fatty, influenced the outcome of the decision for Kandeh’s Passport denial, but Kandeh’s application was brought before Mai Fatty’s desk for further review. Mai is privy to the details of his application,” said our source at the Immigration Department.

“Mama Kandeh, as a leader of a political party, he should be issued with Diplomatic Passport. Other countries are doing it; why not Gambia?  But in our new Gambia, he has been denied Diplomatic passport. The Barrow government cannot deny the fact that Mama Kandeh was denied Diplomatic Passport,” the insider added.

Mr. Kandeh could not be reached for comment. His Public Relations Officer M5 Jallow was contacted for comment, but he was indisposed.

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