Senegal: Gambian tycoon advises Jammeh to bow out of office

Dakar, Senegal (PANA) – Gambian businessman Amadou Samba, a close confidant of President Yahya Jammeh, has advised the defeated head of state, to peacefully hand over power to President-elect Adama Barrow.

In a letter to President Jammeh, Mr. Samba who is also a financial supporter of Jammeh's ruling party wrote: ''I affirm to you my conviction that the wisest course of action today is to undertake a process of respecting the commitment Your Excellency made on national television on December 2, 2016 of cooperating with President-elect Adama Barrow for a smooth transition.''

Gambia's Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) on that day Barrow winner of the presidential election, held on the previous day and Jammeh conceded defeat, besides congratulating Barrow for the victory.

But one week later, President Jammeh made a declaration on state media rejecting the election results and calling for fresh vote.

Since then the tiny west African nation has been thrown into political uncertainty with  Jammeh refusing to step down.

Mr. Samba pointed out that since 9 December, when President Jammeh rejected the election results, many organisations including the UN Security Council, the USA, the European Union, the African Union, Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and several civil society bodies in Gambia have all urged Jammeh to step down.

''Given the strong global reaction, it is important to reflect on the fact that the Gambian people have made their choice and the world community is strongly supporting this choice.'

''During my 35-year career as a private businessman, I have achieved many successes and endured many setbacks. I have been a supporter of the APRC from its earliest days. I have freely contributed to many projects undertaken by the APRC Administration out of my own pocket.

''I did all these things because of my love for my country and wanting to work hard so that my children and grandchildren can grow up in freedom and prosperity for all Gambians.

''It is out of this same sentiment that I implore Your Excellency to cooperate with President-elect Adama Barrow for a smooth transition. I also urge you to cooperate with your fellow ECOWAS presidents and members to ensure that peace and stability shall forever reign in our motherland,'' Mr. Samba concluded.

-0- PANA MLJ/AR 23Dec2016

23 december 2016 13:50:05

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