Gambia’s Army Chief Pledges Loyalty To President Jammeh

As President Yahya Jammeh has refused to accept the outcome of Gambia’s December 1 election, Gambia’s army chief has pledged his support for President Jammeh.

This is coming on the heels of a possible military intervention to have President Jammeh ousted.

President Jammeh had initially accepted his loss upon the Gambia’s electoral commission’s announcement of Barrow as the President-elect of the Gambia.

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However, a week later he ate his words by stating he won’t accept the outcome of the elections, citing irregularities during the vote counting process. The Gambia’s electoral commissioner, however, maintained that Adama Barrow was the winner of the December 1 election.

International powers, as well as regional leaders have condemned President Jammeh’s decision to cling to power, also urging him to accept the people’s choice in order to prevent Gambia from sinking into the abyss of civil war. President Jammeh has, nonetheless, stood his ground, stating that a military intervention will be a “declaration of war”.

On Wednesday, Gambia’s army chief, General Ousman Badjie declared his loyalty to President Jammeh.

“May I please seize this opportunity to renew to your Excellency the assurance of the unflinching loyalty and support of the Gambia Armed Forces,” General Ousman Badjie wrote in a letter to Jammeh published in a pro-government newspaper.

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General Badjie had initially pledged his allegiance to President-elect Adama Barrow when he was announced winner. However, following President Jammeh’s U-turn on the acceptance of the result, it seems General Ousman’s allegiance also took a U-turn.

President-elect Adama Barrow is expected to be sworn in on January 19th, regardless of President Jammeh’s decision to take the case to a court which was priorly dysfunctional.

Leaders of the Economic community of West African States ( ECOWAS) have decided to also attend the inauguration of Adama Barrow, irrespective of Jammeh’s decisions.