Senegal Troops Move To Gambia Border As Jammeh Faces Ultimatum
Senegalese troops have been seen moving towards the Gambian border in an apparent show of force to pressure president Yahya Jammeh to stand down. They had threatened to use military force to remove President Jammeh should he refuse to hand over power to Barrow. Countries in the sub-region, under the auspices of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) yesterday began the deployment of troops to the Gambia’s borders in Senegal, in a show of force to pressure President Yahya Jammeh to stand down today.
This is just as the country’s vice president, Isatou Njie-Saidy and minister of higher education, Aboubacar Senghore resigned yesterday.
Mr. Jammeh who lost the December 1st presidential election to Adama barrow first conceded defeat then changed his mind citing irregularities. He challenged the results in court but suffered setbacks.
Finally, he declares a 90-day state of emergency on Tuesday and got the national assembly to pass a last minute resolution to allow him to stay in power for another three months.
Pressure from Africa, the United States and elsewhere fell into death ears, prompting ECOWAS to threaten military intervention.
The Nigerian military has deployed troops and a warship. Other ECOWAS members are ready to force Jammeh out of office. Wednesday was meant to be his last day in office after his defeat by Adama barrow but parliament has granted him three more months in office. That move effectively stops Mr. Barrow being sworn in on Thursday. Reliable sources say the West African countries are seeking for the UN supports to intervene militarily to eject Mr. Jammeh.
Senegal troops have moved towards the Gambian border in an effort to force President Yahya Jammeh to accept electoral defeat and step down.
Senegal is leading the operation, which is supported by Nigeria and other African countries in the region like Ghana.
Mr Jammeh has been told to leave office by the end of Wednesday and hand over to last month’s election winner, Adama Barrow, who is currently in Senegal.
Mr Jammeh has ruled The Gambia since taking power in a coup in 1994.
Wednesday was meant to be his last day in office but parliament granted him three more months in the post.
Garba Shehu, official spokesman for Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari, said Mr Barrow was preparing to be sworn in as president “on Gambian soil” in the later hours of today Thursday 19th The said date for the inauguration.
At least 26,000 Gambians, fearful that violence could erupt, sought refuge in Senegal this week.
Columns of Senegalese troops moved to the Gambian border on Wednesday as the night drew closely, threatening military action against President Yahya Jammeh, who has refused to accept a December election defeat, military sources and residents of towns near the border said.