A former close aide of President Yahya Jammeh has blamed the First Lady for what he called “her husband’s never-ending brutality.” The aide said Gambians would have long since “enjoyed peace and stability had Madam Zeinab Zuma Jammeh done the right thing.”
“So I blame the First Lady for not prevailing on President Jammeh,” said the aide who prefers to remain anonymous. “In essence, she has the power and influence to transform Jammeh to do away with his iron fist rule.”
The aide said only those who are not close to The Gambia’s corridors of power will underestimate Zeinab’s extra-ordinary powers. “In fact, you will be surprised to know that she possesses more powers than her husband. We make sure that new staff understand that the First Lady’s orders supersede those of President Jammeh. No one in State House questions Zeinab’s Executive Powers,” the aide said, explaining it is a nightmare to be close to President Jammeh. “State House is full of drama,” he said.
The aide said no one wants to disobey Zeinab’s orders. “It is often the norm to obey hers orders and rubbish those of her husband’s. If you do otherwise she will cry and hold Mr. Jammeh hostage. The President then becomes weak and submissive,” added our source. “None of us wants to be responsible for putting tears on First Lady’s eyes,” he said.
“The First Lady once forced her husband to reinstate Fatoumata Jahumpha-Ceesay when she was fired as a nominated Member of Parliament. Her firing came about after the President was mad with the lawmakers for rejecting a budget tabled by the Finance Minister. We will come back to that chapter later,” the aide said, hoping that “Gambian people now understand why I’m mad with the First Lady who has all she needs to sway the tide in State House. She is just selfish that is why she ignores everything Gambian. She has no Gambian friend or associate, and trusts no one except former Lt. Ba Jerreh Manneh and Fatou Njie, her protocol officer. Now that her husband drove away Ba Jerreh, she is left with only Fatou Njie,” the aide said, appealing to the Moroccan-born First Lady to “help remove her heartless husband’s yokes from our necks. I want her to understand that we have reached the tipping point.”
The aide promises to share the First Lady’s secret file with the public. “There is a lot the public needs to know about her. I would not have gone through this route if she has done what is expected of a good housewife, especially the one who rules behind the curtain.”