It is with great sadness that I write once again about the threat of Yaya Jammeh, his loyalists and the possible link up with the MFDC rebels. The article simply confirms what was foreseeable the moment Yaya was allowed to negotiate his exit. His very nature and character made this situation inevitable and sadly many lives may be lost and Gambia destabilized until he is dead. Even then others may attempt to take his place. Just look at so many of the civil wars all over Africa and the third world.
At the root is the same Gambian attitude “Yalla bahna, bai koh akk yalla, na dem rek..bai nyu chi jama..etc” (God is good, leave him to God, let him leave us in peace..). HE WON’T!! Jammeh believes that Gambia is his God given kingdom and he owns it, just like the old kings. If he cannot rule Gambia then there will be no peace. He has a 22 year track record of this pattern of behavior and clear evidence of his intentions.
If he cannot rule Gambia he will either try to destabilase it and if possible link up with MFDC to create a new Republic of Foni with Kanilai as the capital. The MFDC seem entrenched in Kanilai with some of the residents supporting and protecting them. Recent events in Foni confirm this idea.
On his side, he has the core of his army and an unknown quantity and range of weapons. His soldiers are experienced veterans with an intimate knowledge of the geography and workings of the security services. In addition is an unknown number of sympathizers within the Barrow government who have no reason to be loyal to him.
This is not just a problem of the Barrow government, but for every Gambian. The Barrow government is seen as being tribalist, notably anti Jola. Whether true or not, the problem is how to weed out and deal with Jammeh sympathizers in powerful positions without creating a potential civil war.
If this situation continues it could at best lead to low level guerrilla warfare with many innocent civilians being killed over a long period of time. This would create fear and uncertainty hindering the recovery of the economy and rebuilding of our country. At worst, it could lead to the secession of Foni from Gambia to create a separate state and a full blown civil war with Senegalese troops being forced to intervene without the permission of the Gambia government.
Many civil wars could have been avoided if the powers had taken “effective action” at the start, and so it is in Gambia today. The seed of this rebellion is Kanilai itself – Jammeh’s home and properties. The Barrow government needs to allow Senegalese troops to enter it, clean out the MFDC rebels and destroy it completely, including his Jalangs. This is the root of the cancer in the “stomach” of Gambia. War is an “extension of diplomacy by forcible means”. Diplomacy has never worked with Jammeh and is only an opportunity for more deceit and manipulation. The only thing he understands is short and brutal action. How many Gambians would be alive today if he had been killed early on.
As I’ve written in the past, the only way to kill a snake is to cut off the head. Allowing it to escape and settle next door with its young ones is suicidal.
A warning to you Mr. Barrow and your ministers: How many presidents have been killed by their own security personnel who were allowed to get too close? Anwar Sadat of Egypt in 1972, Indira Gandhi of India and many others since. If you fail to act decisively, then your days will certainly be numbered. The threat of Jammeh and his loyalists is very real. There is a clear and present danger, as the Americans put it. This is not a game, but a matter of life and death. Do you think the Jungullars would have any difficulty or hesitation in killing you and your family? Look at their track record Sir!
The solution? Forget diplomacy and the niceties of the law etc. Allow Senegal to send in troops to clean out Kanilai then destroy it completely. It is Jammeh’s heart and strength. If not, you and many others may be going to the next world before him. It’s kill him or be killed by him. Strong words, but the truth.
America is the home of democracy and the rule of law but when threatened they strike. Right or wrong. . Ask Bin Laden and many others.
These words may seem harsh but this is real politics, especially African politics.
By Boor Sine
Editors note: The views expressed by the author do not reflect the position of the Freedom Newspaper. Thanks for your attention.