Sarjo Bayang reveals serious imbalances and risks of a leader in crisis
There exists large body of tangibly compelling evidence suggesting how dangerous and unsuitable it is for Yaya Jammeh staying as president of Gambia. Such evidence is derived from no remote sources but by critical examination of the man who forced his way to become Gambian Head of State since 22 July 1998 through what was deemed bloodless coup. From that day on, Jammeh turned into blood thirsty dictator whose killings include collaborators and perceived enemies alike without any boundary. That is not all. Look at Jammeh through the broader spectacle of his real life nature. See what he represents in his 20 years dictatorship.
Hateful and Vexation
You don’t need getting closer to recognise hatefulness and vexatious nature of Yaya Jammeh. From day 1 it was no secret and Yaya could not hide it anyway from curious observers that using guns to dislodge a sitting government was largely because he hated seeing others enjoying good life.
Rather than blame his poverty on personal history and tangible material circumstances, Yaya saw a different picture on moving clouds. He could not cope with deep biting extremes of poverty as his destined fate from childhood hardship.
Full of hate and vexation Yaya could not think of any decent exit out of his acute poverty but dangerously conceived plans of dislodging a sitting government as quick fix access to public resources. By immediate unrestricted access to public finance and material resources, Jammeh thought that getting rich quick was to assure him happiness he never enjoyed all his destitute life.
He failed himself abysmally when it turned out that stealing public money and claiming to be rich could not translate into happiness normal people decently enjoy. Then his hate and vexation intensifies more.
Part of Jammeh’s drive to harm other people has to do with his notion that he could transfer the biting pain of his poverty to others. He wants to be seen as the richest one man standing on Gambian soil with ability to buy land, cars, buildings, and women. Has it worked in any way or is Jammeh still not the poor church mouse still craving for happiness in vain? As years passed by Jammeh remains poor in the face of abundance, destitute, vexed, and more hateful ever.
Unstable Personality Disorder
Jammeh is doing more harm to himself than most people in Gambia can clearly see. His psychic is that if he would not be happy in life after all the looted wealth and claim to power, then nobody deserves one minute happiness on Gambian soil. That way of thinking is eating deep inside Jammeh’s skull and slowly killing him. In the process he behaves like a drunken horse posing high risk to the whole population.
Desperate for command and control Jammeh is proud calling himself dictator but insists he is dictator of development.
Everything else said about Jammeh being smart and capable of laying iron fist control over whole Gambia does not make him a competent person you can trust leading a nation.
Up to the time of July 1994 coup that catapulted Jammeh from junior army rank to head of military government in Gambia he was not in any public responsibility requiring basic management skills. He was being managed but has not managed any establishment. Those who knew him said that he never managed even simple social relation such as keeping a stable affair. The point is that Gambians should have thought about how least competent Jammeh still remains to warrant letting him lead a nation especially being so unjust and corrupt.
To hide behind his total incompetence Jammeh resorts to maltreating others and grossly abusing powers of the presidency. He prevents competent public sector workers from performing their roles and has since entrenched himself as very incompetent custodian of public resources at escalating counterproductive scale of decadence. People working with Jammeh fully know this and they only gossip about it privately out of fear for their job. In the course of very long time productivity and competence no longer matter under Jammeh as chief custodian and presider over public resources.
Resource Risk and Corruption Combined
Yaya Jammeh taking everything belonging to government as his private property is one serious resource risk Gambia is facing. This has now reached alarming proportion as Jammeh loudly said over national radio and television that Gambia belongs to him.
If anyone thought that was mere joke, you better think again. Given the fact that Jammeh sees his role as hiring and firing state ministers and public sector workers, Gambia for him has been reduced to an extension of his private estates.
With that in mind all funds borrowed in the name of Gambia government become private wealth reserve of Yaya Jammeh simply because he is president.
Most seriously public funds and other shared resources are not productively employed to bring about value added returns. In situations like that resourcefulness declined so serious that nothing works. That is how the economy and finance of Gambia plunged to sea bottom level.
To instil fear and in making sure Gambians keep tight lips Jammeh resorts to rampant killings. If there is one reason why despite all that people hate being ruled by Jammeh and he still kept going for 20 years that is because Gambians are afraid to die. He killed 14 young students between 10th and 1th April in year 2000. That is different from massacre of countless West Africans including Ghanaians.
Those events made Gambians more aware that if Jammeh could openly kill those young promising Gambians for sake of his position he would do same to anyone.
Apart from broad day massacre of young students, secret killings by Jammeh account for more untimely deaths than road accidents on annual count.
With confidence that Gambia belongs to him and no nation will come to salvage Gambians Jammeh does not hide his killer capability. He brags about killing his enemies real or perceived and ready to bury them six feet deep.
Jammeh’s rampant killings include Finance Minister Ousman Koro Ceesay, prominent journalist Deyda Hydara, and many others.
Confident that they can kill anyone and nothing comes out of it those carrying these killings are now sponsored at foreign missions. They are retained on Gambia government payroll and melt into the embassy staffs as normal workers.
Except for his senseless killings all other promises made by Yaya Jammeh failed. He promised to fight corruption and became most corrupt. He blamed former president Sir Dawda Jawara for overstaying in power and now wants to rule for 1 billion years. He talked about Jawara ownership of property in UK. Now Jammeh owns properties around the globe in prime locations including Potomac in USA.
Jammeh openly tells lies and expects Gambians to buy his stuff without doubt. Majority of Gambians thought a president does not tell lies. They are disappointed to hear president Jammeh telling lies but nobody dares question him.
Not so much surprising. It was Jammeh who said that he hated politics because politicians are thieves and they tell lies. With his 20 years in the highest political office of Gambia Yaya Jammeh now stands tallest and biggest owner of lies over national radio and television. Listen to conflicting tales he came up with regarding this recent attempted coup and see how much lies he blew up.
Jammeh also lied that he discovered cure for HIV /AIDS and other health conditions. He lies about discovery of oil in Gambia that was to be drilled more than 5 years ago. If telling lies is the work of politicians then Yaya Jammeh clearly mastered the game full enough to be crowned. He lies about being strict Muslim while worshiping devils. Countless lies nobody can handle.
Friends and associates of Jammeh claiming to be his family are the ones to explain about their pain of betrayal. The coup of July 1994 that he now boasts about as revolution succeeded because other army ranks invaded with him on the wild venture of unseating an elected democratic government. They have all been betrayed and majority of Gambians have no sympathy for them.
So many decent Gambians who could not identify truth from lies plunged for Jammeh’s sweet talks. They joined his ranks in the good name of serving the nation. Guess what, they have all been disgracefully betrayed. Some of those that Jammeh betrayed after raising their public or political profile now wish he disappears within split of a second. Lucky ones escaped and found better jobs outside Gambia. Good number of them are killed or jailed for life.
Gambian people are the most unsuspecting victims of Jammeh’s betrayal scheme. Many cannot still learn and remain gullible. Few are still enjoying bread crumbs and counting that as their share of the loot. Even though majority of Gambians know about Jammeh’s rampant corruption and stealing public funds, he takes advantage that ordinarily people don’t expect a president telling lies and keeps deceiving gullible Gambian masses. That is the most insincere betrayal of public trust. Look at the public gathering they called protest against terrorists. Those who risked their good family and life to rescue the nation from further wreckage are not seen by right thinking Gambians as terrorists but liberators. America will be seen sending very wrong signals as Jammeh now banks on the court of Papa Faal and Cherno Njie as though US backing dictatorship he so brutally imposed on whole population for 20 years. Jammeh is always hiding behind smoked screen. The truth will eventually catch up with him after more than 20 years deception and betrayal.
Starting from his false conversion to Islam to illicit money dealings all amounts to fake about Jammeh. He told Gambians that it was God who gave him money just as he began stealing public funds to get rich quick after that unlawful dislodging of government in July 1994.
Jammeh likes to get Gambians busy about nothing while he continues doing worst. In his words he acquired his stolen wealth from Allah’s World Bank. For example he wants to divert public attention from his continuous stealing of public funds by making this foiled coup topic of public discussion.
Even about this foiled coup Jammeh claimed he was informed by demons it was to happen. He advanced further to say that names of those involved have been known to him.
Jammeh diverts all public resources for his nefarious projects. Just recently he told Gambians that by January 2015 the country will no longer import rice and national production of the staple food will exceed domestic consumption leaving enough surplus for exports.
He told Gambians that the country never benefitted from duty free trade from America. As matters stand Gambia is expelled by US government on grounds of human rights abuses. It is therefore out of place for America to describe Gambia as friendly nation in the wake of this recent foiled coup. Something is not adding up. American will be seen playing double or triple standards known for denouncing dictatorship and then helping dictators like Jammeh by prosecuting decent Gambians with dual American citizenship prepared to dislodge an overstaying dictator. Is it because Jammeh bought high tax band property in America and belongs to rich tax payers? Has America at any time asked how it is possible that president of poor African country hoards suitcases of new US Dollar notes buying expensive property at prime location like Potomac? Is there a faked name of diplomatic immunity added to Jammeh chain of powerful claims?
Connecting the dots over series of coup attempts in Gambia
It was over national radio and television that Jammeh said to Gambians no elections will unseat him. He advised Gambians that anyone who wishes to dislodge him from power has to use guns as he did. He also told the BBC that he will rule for “1 billion years”.
For a sitting president to say that citizens wishing to unseat him can only do so by force of guns, the recent coup and those before this are fitting response to his invitation. Gambians will have to take as serious any statement made by the president over public media.
Someone in responsible position as president talking over national television is expected to be guided by policy and protocol. It will be seen very much legal and within the rights of coup plotters if they simply respond to what the sitting president advised. America has to consider that piece of public information the president made over national radio and television.
If government of Gambia outlawed coups or forceful unseating of the president then Jammeh is bound to withdraw his invitation to citizens as in that public statement that everyone is free to use guns to dislodge him.
If Jammeh made such open call because of confidence in his military and security might that has by now been tested and so badly failed him. At the moment security detainees of Jammeh and his government keeps increasing daily. Jammeh knows his support in the army is rapidly fading and that is why he relies on mercenaries from rebels from Cassamance and elsewhere to back him.
For Jammeh to state over national radio and television that he will set example on those who planned unseating by force of guns, that is too extreme and dangerous. It was him who encouraged Gambians to use guns in dislodging him as according to him elections will not unseat him. If he changes position on that public pronouncement, Jammeh must inform Gambians officially. By him making that statement over national television any law that incriminates coup plotters will be seen null and void. Although Jammeh does not follow protocol and never subject his role to policy or regulations, but anything he says over public media will be taken against him in matters like this. Law abiding and decent Gambians expect a president to be responsible in making public statements.
Above all 20 years dictatorship is already too much for right thinking Gambians to accept any extension. Jammeh clearly is not a presidential material and lacks all qualities of a leader.
Gambia is a nation in mourning as gallant citizens made selfless sacrifice of their precious lives just because they wanted to end brutal dictatorship. May their souls Rest In Peace.
What is the international community doing?
International community will not be seen doing good by letting Gambian situation degenerate into civil war and then start shipping out food aid to victims like it happened in Sierra Leone, Liberia or elsewhere when preventive intervention is readily at hand. Diplomacy will be reduced to hypocrisy all in the sweet name of protocol while vital Gambian human stock perishes under dictatorship in broad day light. On account of the seriousness situation the world already knows about Gambia, international community will not be seen helpful especially when all the foreign embassies there already have enough information in their secret files. They only talk about it during dinner and tea times. Now a solution is required before any later.
Given the fact of matters at hand Yaya Jammeh is too dangerous and very much unsuitable leading a nation. He is vexed, hyper, in temper adding to his unjust and corrupt nature.
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