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How Gambia emerged from the shadows only a year after Jammeh’s exit.

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Yahya Jammeh, was a former Gambian president who ruled for 22 years. He refused to cease power and never agreed to surrender every time he lost an election.

So in order to get him out of power since he had refused to leave voluntarily, the military decided to intervene with the help of other troops from neighbouring West Africa countries.

As the military enforcement was taking place Adama Barrow the president – elect had to be flown to Senegal with international support, so that he could be safely sworn in.

As soon as Jammeh realised that the president – elect had been sworn in, he had no choice than to leave the country. That he did in peace. He left immediately to Equatorial Guinea. On leaving he kissed his Quaran publicly, and then waved Goodbye to his supporters who were very sad and in tears.

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It was said that Jammeh’s governance instilled fear in the entire nation, as it was full of  arrests, enforced disappearances and extrajudicial killings.

Things however began to change quickly as life returned back to Gambia speedily in just a year after Jammeh left. Journalists became very free to carry out their work,  human rights defenders were now able to carry out their mandate and the average Gambian began to enjoy a lot of fundamental rights and freedom without fearing persecution.

The nation’s population of 1.9 million people were left in shambles and hunger because of the stunted economy during Jammeh’s governance which had forced many to flee to Europe in quest for survival.

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It was said that Gambia’s new government inherited $1bn in debt, and in order to recover some of her stolen funds,  $50m worth of assets tied to Jammeh were seized, and  131 properties with about 80 bank accounts linked to Jammeh were also frozen.

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The new president Adama Barrow however did not let the citizens of the country down as well at the international community. His administration did a good job as they were able to revive the collapsed economy to a vibrant destination for investors. and restore the confidence of partners such as the;

  • World Bank and African Development Bank.
  • The International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation – Barrow’s government signed a $210m framework agreement with The International Islamic Trade Finance Corporation in order to boost the energy and agricultural sector which would primarily result in more job creation.
  • Germany – Germany  also committed to assist Gambia in solving its power crisis in order to ensure development in other sectors of the country’s economy.

He also took salient steps in reducing the cost of living by bringing down the price of the bag of rice and other basic commodities.

Aside reviving the country’s collapsed economy, Barrow’s administration did well to address abuses committed under the old administration. The diplomatic passports of Jammeh and more than 200 other people, including his family members were also cancelled.

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The Barrow administration also tried nine officials of The National Intelligence Agency, which was popularly  known for carrying out killings and detentions ordered by Jammeh. He also restored the agency back to their original duty of protecting the citizens.

From: West African Countries

 

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