Buhari In The Gambia To Hold Talks With Jammeh
SAN FRANCISCO, December 13, (THEWILL) – President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday morning arrived Banjul, The Gambia to meet with the country’s President, Yahya Jammeh, who lost the presidential election penultimate week.
He arrived along with President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf of Liberia, who is the current Chairperson of the Authority of Heads of State and Government of ECOWAS, and President Ernest Bai Koroma of Sierra-Leone.
Recall that Jammeh, upon his defeat at the just-concluded election in that country, conceded to his challenger, Barrow, a real estate mogul, who won with 222,708 votes (43.3%), while Jammeh polled 208,487 (39.6%).
“I'm calling you to wish you all the best, the Gambian people have spoken and I have no reason to contest the will of Almighty Allah,” Jammeh had said.
However, The Gambia's president later turned round to reject the election result calling for thorough investigation.
He said, “After a thorough investigation, I have decided to reject the outcome of the recent election.
“I lament serious and unacceptable abnormalities which have reportedly transpired during the electoral process. I recommend fresh and transparent elections which will be officiated by a god-fearing and independent electoral commission.”
According to a statement issued by the President's Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, the three African leaders were received at the airport by Gambia’s Vice-President, Isatou Njie-Saidy.
The out-going President of Ghana, John Mahama, who had earlier arrived Banjul, will join the other West African leaders to meet President Jammeh at the CoCo Ocean Resort and Spa, Banjul.
Jammeh had earlier conceded defeat in the election, after a 22-year rule, but recanted a week later, asking for fresh polls to be conducted by a “god-fearing and independent electoral commission.”
“President Buhari and the ECOWAS leaders will discuss the ensuing impasse in The Gambia with President Jammeh, and insist on the sanctity of the electoral process, and respect for the wishes of the people.
“They would also ask their host to respect the Constitution of his own country, and maintain the inviolability of an electoral process that had been concluded, and in which he had admitted defeat, and congratulated his main challenger.
“The leaders are also scheduled to meet the President-elect, Adama Barrow.
“President Buhari is expected back in Abuja later today,” the statement read.