A leaked WhatsApp audio from Ousman ‘Rambo’ Jatta, the 1st deputy leader of the former ruling party, Alliance for Patriotic Reorientation and Construction (APRC) revealed a planned demonstration for the return of former autocratic leader Yahya AJJ Jammeh.
Former President Jammeh was defeated by a Coalition team headed by current President Adama Barrow in a controversial election that almost saw the country decent into civil war in 2016.
Incumbent Jammeh first conceded before reversing his decision, claiming abnormalities in the Election.
He ruled The Gambia for 22 years.
Feared Jammeh is currently in Equatorial Guinea on exile but still maintains his support basis back home.
Mid last month, the spokesperson of The Gambia government, Dr. Ebrima G. Sankareh dismissed rumors of the return of the former President Yahya Jammeh to the country.
The former President is accused of multiple gross human rights violations. The Barrow administration has established a Truth and Reparation and Reconciliation Commission (TRRC) to look into the human rights violation committed under the 22-year rule of Mr. Jammeh. The Janneh Commission which was established to probe into the financial dealing of the former strong man, found him to have embezzlement of nearly US$1 billion of public funds out of The Gambia with 88 different bank accounts.
The APRC party has since not made any official comment on the matter.
However, Gambians have already taken to the social media to condemn the planned move.
While calling on the government to deny the intended protest, the Chairperson of The Gambia Centre for Victims of Human Rights Violations (under Jammeh) have already expressed his disappointment with the suggestion of Jammeh’s return, describing it has “lack of sensitivity to the plight of the victims”.
“If the government should give the APRC such a permit to demonstrate, it is going to be an insult and slap on the face of the victims, given all the revelations about the former regime’s human rights violations,” Sheriff Kijera told a local newspaper.
The Barrow administration is widely praised for its “democratic nature”. It remains to be seen whether or not the government will permit the said protest should the party wish to continue with it.
The government has recently permitted a demonstration against the president to resign.