Of Checkpoints And Heartless Soldiers

Soldier 1
Check points in Banjul-Serrekunda highway

soldier 2

Amidst the confusion and ecstatic elations amongst Gambians all over the world that, the dictatorial regime of President Yahya Jammeh is about to fall, one prepares himself for some nasty surprises. Gambian soldiers have proven to be the most unreliable elements in the whole Gambian dictatorship.

At Kairo News, we set ourselves to dig beyond the euphoria and high expectations. History is littered with monumental betrayals in dictatorships, thus the length of time it takes to remove tyrants.

Who understands human folly than tyrants? President Jammeh is bad at everything but brilliant at espionage, setting up traps, betraying close confidants and executing his plans single-mindedly without remorse or compassion.

President Jammeh cannot rule the Gambia with due process, and democratic principles. He should have been history long time ago. No one seems to like him, and his behaviours are so stinking, not even his staunch supporters know why they adore him. One can only speculate the fanfare and attractions of power, which can be the only explainable reason, some will say “Jammeh for life”.

Yesterday, Tuesday the 30th December 2014 was the day it dawned on thousands of Gambians that, no one likes Yahya Jammeh. Everybody was happy for the brief moment, everyone was expecting that, finally, the devil will be captured or erased from the Gambian presidency. Alas, if only wishes were like horses!

What went wrong in the whole coup debacle, who should we believe and who betrays who, and what was the chain reactions the Jammeh mafias set for unsuspecting Gambians to fall in?

The one thing dissident groups, activists, politicians, media, and civil society have to learn is never to rush in and believe rumours of coup or the fall of an entrenched dictator without detailed analysis. The highs people get at the thought of a man like President Jammeh falling and the lows they go after realising that, he was in fact dictating the whole chain reaction is traumatic and inconsolable.

soldier 3soldier 4

We got reliable detailed news that, Jammeh set a trap and lured dissidents into it. However, with the turn of events, we could not just suspend all over narratives and stick with the plot to incriminate many more innocent soldiers and civilians. We dug deep and discover that, the soldiers at Yumdum Barracks and Fajara Barracks were in fact taken out of the picture. The main infantry and regular Gambian army were not involved in the whole palava last night. Which begs the question, why? However, since we all want to believe that, Gambian soldiers will at last muster the courage and do the only proper thing. One expects, however, the well armed and heartless State Guards were patrolling and searching for remnants of insurgents whilst the main army can only hear stuffs on army radio.

We further enquired as to who is control.

The answer we got are starkly tilted towards Jammeh and his loyalists than the mutineers. On the side of the dissident groups, the news continued to filter that, Jammeh has lost control and that, the insurgents are in fact in control continued to fill the air.

However, when news finally got confirmed that, Jammeh has landed in Yumdum without a finger being raised, it finally became clear that the case is laid to rest.

The final thoughts to remember are: has Yahya Jammeh infiltrated dissidents individuals who may be giving Gambians and the international community the most hopeful and optimist news of Jammeh demised whilst in his payroll? If yes, how many of them are selling the struggle for their fame and name?

Gambians must now realise the soldiers’ angle looks too weak to be the solution. The Gambian people are now the custodians of their own imprisonment and trapping, they must end it. I for one have never had any serious thought that, Gambian soldiers will mobilise themselves and remove Jammeh. A rogue renegade soldiers as in the case of Dadis Camara of Guinea, yes, but organised military takeover, I doubt that very much.

Kairo News’ aim was never to dampen the mood of Gambians, but holding them in suspense for so long whilst the truth is different is unfair to our readers and listeners who relied on our principled analysis all day and night yesterday.

Let the Gambian civilian use their democratic rights to end the 20 years of national embarrassment and pain and stop banking their hopes on soldiers who got us into this brutal and never-ending brutality.



  1. Now that the dust seemed to have settled and “normalcy” restored, it is time to commend the editors and staff of Kaironews, for the manner in which the reporting of this event was conducted…This is professionalism at its best, and is evidence of the credibility and reliability of this medium as a reliable News outlet….I can’t say “Thank You” and “Well Done” well enough…But all the same…Thank You and Well Done…

    Your analyses of.the facts of this event is in line, and supportive of your view that it was a “trap” to lure dissidents into Banjul by the regime..

    The fact that they had a “mole” within State House and that the state only needed the State Guards to contain this situation, is highly suggestive of a “honey trap”, not only to capture/kill as many dissidents as gullible enough to fall for it, but equally, to divert the attention of the population from the never ending pressures the regime is facing, as well as, drum up support and sympathy for an unpopular dictator, from a population that abhors violence..

    Whilst we celebrate the courage of the fallen/injured or captured and pray for the souls of the departed, we must urge all (especially former soldiers) to learn from this and previous failed attempt, to be wary of future offers.of “collaboration” from the Gambia Armed Forces and to avoid amateurish adventures to remove a regime that has a solid base and is deeply entrenched…

    We must also caution all leaders and leading voices in the struggle, to desist from creating illusions of a divided, dissatisfied and disgruntled Army, ready to topple Jammeh and thus, encouraging and sending “hot headed” young men, virtually unarmed and ill prepared, to topple Jammeh, leading them to their deaths, capture or serious injuries…

    I know Mr Savage (ex US Army & war veteran) takes a lot of stick when he cautions the struggle on military related issues, but whilst I do not believe in a military option, I think he is one of a few voices that needs to be listened to when a military option is being considered….Too many young lives are being lost due to irrational, suicidal acts..

    Once again, I thank Kaironews and urge you to maintain the same etiquette. .

  2. Good comments Bax and well done Kairo News. Situation was well covered in detail, factual, properly analyse, fair & balance. EXCELLENT BUT OUR THOUGHTS AND PRAYERS FOR HEROISM OF GALLANT FREEDOM FIGHTERS! Military adventurism to get rid of dictator is not storming State House or Kanilai, seizing airport, GRTS and Gamtel but difficult task of trailing and ambush of Presidential convoy for sniper job and surprise attack; including tracking high command and abducting key Generals; in this instance General Saul Badjie should have been main target; among others.

  3. Kaironews is the reliable institution you can count on . They give correct and unexaggerated information. I visit the site at least three times a day . Even if I am away from my home computer, I will use my phone or tablet to get current, know what is really happening in the world. I thank and appreciate these folks for their heroic, committed, and dedication for general public’s awareness. Thank you my friends. May God protect you.