| Africatime
Sunday 23 April 2017
(AFP (eng) 01/13/17)
Nigeria should consider giving asylum to The Gambia's President Yahya Jammeh as a way of ending the political crisis in his country, lawmakers said on Thursday. A motion passed in the lower chamber House of Representatives gave members' backing to regional efforts to resolve the dispute, sparked by Jammeh's refusal to accept election results. The MPs said "the clock is ticking fast" for The Gambia and there was a need to step up diplomacy, as the possibility of violence and mass displacement threatened West African stability. They called on Jammeh to "respect the will of the people", who voted for opposition candidate Adama Barrow in the December 1 election. Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari, who is leading the regional diplomatic effort,...
(AFP (eng) 01/13/17)
France's top diplomat Jean-Marc Ayrault struck a defiant tone at a summit on Friday with foreign ministers from across Africa as he urged them to show confidence and hope despite the deadly jihadist threat. With the battle against extremists, the struggle to improve governance and the migrant crisis high on the agenda, ministers from at least 30 nations met in Mali's capital Bamako ahead of heads of state due on Saturday. Mali called on France four years ago to help force jihadists out of key northern cities. To this day, 4,000 French troops remain in the country and across the Sahel region. "(Choosing) Bamako as the venue is an act of confidence after the intervention," Ayrault told journalists as the...
(AFP (eng) 01/13/17)
Talks gathering some 30 African states and France begin in Mali's capital Bamako on Friday, with leaders expected to focus on Africa's battle against jihadists and bid to improve its democratic record. The summit, also due to take in the migrant crisis, will see foreign ministers gather first, with heads of state expected to follow Saturday, according to Malian and French conference organisers. Many of the nations taking part were once ruled by France, which in recent years has boosted its military involvement in the continent. Several English-speaking African countries will also be present. In a bid to help crush the growing jihadist threat, France has trained more than 20,000 African soldiers every year since a Paris summit in 2013,...
(AFP (eng) 01/12/17)
Nigerian lawmakers are to discuss whether Gambian President Yahya Jammeh should be given asylum, a member of parliament said on Thursday. Emmanuel Yisa Orker-Jev, head of the rules and business committee in the House of Representatives, said the motion would be discussed later on Thursday. It asks whether Jammeh should be given "safe haven as part of the reconciliation process of the crisis going on in Gambia", Orker-Jev told state television channel NTA. Jammeh lost December 1 elections to opposition candidate Adama Barrow but despite initially accepting the result has since vowed to challenge it in the courts.
(AFP (eng) 01/11/17)
Gambia's president has warned the international community against interfering in the country's political crisis, on the eve of talks with west African leaders who will urge him to step aside. On state-run television late Tuesday, Yahya Jammeh lashed out at "an unprecedented level of foreign interference in our elections and internal affairs and also a sustained smear campaign, propaganda and misinformation." But the strongman of 22 years standing appeared more conciliatory to his own public than in recent weeks, without budging on his refusal to acknowledge opponent Adama Barrow as winner of a December 1 presidential election. "I believe we can ask Gambians to come together to resolve this and any other matter without undue external interference," Jammeh said. Leaders...
(Reuters (Eng) 01/11/17)
Gambia's Supreme Court was unable to hear President Yahya Jammeh's legal challenge to his election defeat on Tuesday after judges from Nigeria and Sierra Leone failed to show up. Chief Justice Emmanuel Fagbenle adjourned the hearing until Jan. 16, meaning the court will hear the challenge filed by Jammeh's ruling APRC party two days before his mandate ends. Jammeh, in power since a 1994 coup, lost the Dec. 1 election to businessman Adama Barrow, but the authoritarian leader has contested the result in a move condemned at home and abroad. The question of whether Gambia can overcome its political impasse and install Barrow as president next week is seen as a test case for African democracy in a region used...
(AFP (eng) 01/10/17)
Gambia's Supreme Court cannot rule for several months on President Yahya Jammeh's challenge against his electoral defeat last month due to a lack of judges, the court's chief justice said Tuesday. "We can only hear this matter when we have a full bench of the Supreme Court," Emmanuel Fagbenle said, pointing out that the extra judges needed to hear the case were not available. The Gambia relies on foreign judges, notably from Nigeria, to staff its courts due to a lack of trained professionals in the tiny west African state. Jammeh's political party lodged a legal case on his behalf last month aimed at annulling the December 1 election result and triggering new elections. Fagbenle added that he would prefer...
(AFP (eng) 01/10/17)
An ex minister who has become the most high-profile defector from Gambian President Yahya Jammeh's government has declared his support for Adama Barrow, the businessman who recently defeated Jammeh at the polls. Former Information and Communication Minister Sheriff Bojang fled to neighbouring Senegal on Monday after resigning, he said via a Facebook post later that evening. Bojang said his conscience had overwhelmed him after Jammeh declared he would not step down at the end of his mandate on January 18. As minister for two years he was Jammeh's mouthpiece for explaining the actions of the regime, including arbitrary detentions, activists' deaths in custody and a crackdown on opposition protests. "It is never too late to do the right thing," he...
(AFP (eng) 01/10/17)
West African leaders announced Monday they would return to The Gambia to try and persuade President Yahya Jammeh to step down, but said the use of force remains an option. The mandate for Jammeh's five-year term expires on January 18, after which president-elect Adama Barrow is supposed to take power. But the strongman, in power for 22 years, has vowed to stay in office until a dispute over the election result is resolved, though he has become increasingly isolated at home and abroad. Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari will accompany Liberian counterpart Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Ghana's former
(Reuters (Eng) 01/10/17)
Gambia's communication minister, Sheriff Bojang, said on Monday he had left his post in the first high-profile Cabinet defection since President Yahya Jammeh refused to accept losing a December election. Opposition leader Adama Barrow won the polls by a thin margin, sparking nationwide celebrations in the riverine nation wedged within its larger and freer neighbor, Senegal. But after initially conceding defeat, Jammeh changed his mind a week later and said his party would challenge the results in court. In a statement sent to Reuters, Bojang said such efforts were "an attempt to subvert the express will of the Gambian electorate" and he urged others to join him. "The Gambia has decided and we must accept and respect this decision," he...
(The Associated Press 01/10/17)
Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari will lead three West African heads of state to Gambia on Wednesday in an effort to persuade its longtime leader to step down, officials said Monday. A meeting Monday in Abuja agreed on the mission, Nigerian Foreign Minister Geoffrey Onyema said of the second presidential delegation from the Economic Community of West African States to visit Gambia since President Yahya Jammeh lost Dec. 1 elections. Jammeh initially conceded the loss, but changed his mind. The West African bloc has said it has a military force on standby if Jammeh refuses to cede power when his mandate expires Jan. 19. Leaders meeting Saturday in Ghana said they were working on a diplomatic solution. But Onyema told journalists...
(The Associated Press 01/10/17)
The West African regional bloc stands with the people of Gambia and will apply diplomatic solutions to solve the country's political crisis, the body's chair said Saturday. The Economic Community of West African States has before threatened to send troops led by neighboring Senegal to Gambia if President Yahya Jammeh does not step down when his mandate ends on Jan. 19. The longtime leader lost a Dec. 1 election to opposition coalition candidate Adama Barrow. Jammeh initially conceded, but later called for a new vote. The United Nations, the United States, the European Union and others have united in criticizing him. Jammeh's party filed a petition to the country's Supreme Court against the election, and a key court ruling is...
(AL Jazeera 01/10/17)
Those involved in political-transition talks concerned over country's worsening security including crackdown on media. West African leaders are to head to Gambia to persuade President Yahya Jammeh to hand over power after his election defeat last month, according to Nigeria's foreign minister. Geoffrey Onyeama said on Monday Nigeria's president Muhammadu Buhari will visit Banjul, the capital of Gambia, on Wednesday, along with his Liberian counterpart Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Ghana's former president John Dramani Mahama. The decision came as West African leaders met in Nigeria's capital, Abuja, to decide on next steps in their mediation of the Gambia's political crisis. Wednesday's meeting would "discuss with President Jammeh the imperative to respect the constitution", Onyeama said in a statement. He said...
(Huffingtonpost 01/10/17)
And it’s ironic given the growing consensus that Beijing is the U.S. president-elect’s enemy number one. Eric Olander and Cobus van Staden are the duo behind the China Africa Project and hosts of the popular China in Africa Podcast. We’re here to answer your most pressing, puzzling, even politically incorrect questions, about all things related to the Chinese in Africa and Africans in China. The election of Donald Trump has introduced a new era of uncertainty in global politics, especially in Africa where the president-elect has said little about his foreign policy agenda for the continent. Not surprisingly, Trump’s unpredictable, provocative style is sparking widespread concern across the continent as to whether the United States plans to remain engaged in...
(AFP (eng) 01/09/17)
West African political leaders are to return to The Gambia this week to press President Yahya Jammeh to abide by election results and step down, Nigeria's foreign minister said Monday. Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari is to visit Banjul on Wednesday with Liberian counterpart Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Ghana's former president John Dramani Mahama, Geoffrey Onyeama said. The meeting would "discuss with President Jammeh the imperative to respect the constitution", the foreign minister added in a statement after talks on the crisis in Abuja.
(AFP (eng) 01/09/17)
Gambian President Yahya Jammeh has fired 12 ambassadors after they called for him to step aside and allow opposition leader Adama Barrow to take power, a foreign ministry source told AFP Monday. The Gambia's ambassadors to China, Britain, Turkey, Senegal, and the United States, as well as the country's permanent representative to the United Nations, were among those sacked after sending a letter asking Jammeh to leave in late December. "The Gambia government has recalled 12 ambassadors after terminating their services," a foreign ministry source told AFP on condition of anonymity. "I do not know why President Yahya Jammeh terminated their services, but I can tell you that these are the ambassadors that congratulated and endorsed President-elect Adama Barrow for...
(AL Jazeera 01/09/17)
As Yahya Jammeh's term comes to a close, exiled Gambians reflect on their sorrowful escapes and hopes for a new Gambia. Musa Saidykhan still feels the ache in the scars knotting across his back when the temperature drops every winter in his two-storey home in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The father of four, then the editor of the widely read Independent newspaper, fled The Gambia in 2006 after he was tortured by agents of President Yahya Jammeh's government. The pain, each year, brings those memories back into focus. Saidykhan told Al Jazeera that he spent three weeks in torment: electroshocked, scored by bayonets, beaten with chains and having plastic bags forced over his head as he was held at The Gambia's...
(AFP (eng) 01/09/17)
Gabon witnessed one of the most sensational finishes to an Africa Cup of Nations tournament when no-hopers Zambia stunned the Ivory Coast to win the 2012 final. Zambia failed to qualify this time, but the Ivorians will be among the favourites again when the competition returns to the central African state with the first fixtures scheduled for Saturday. AFP Sport rates the chances of the 16 challengers for the $4 million (3.8 million euros) first prize (last three competitive results in brackets with W denoting a win, D a draw and L a loss): FAVOURITES Egypt (WWW) Back among the elite and in good form. After winning three consecutive Cup of Nations titles, they failed to qualify for the past...
(The Associated Press 01/07/17)
West African leaders will make a decision Saturday on Gambia's electoral crisis and its longtime leader's refusal to accept defeat in elections. A military intervention led by Senegal could be in the offing. Nigeria's presidential spokesman Garba Shehu says Friday that "one way or the other, a decision will be taken." Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari heads a committee named by the Economic Committee of West African States to resolve the crisis. The regional bloc has threatened to send troops if President Yahya Jammeh does not step down Jan. 19. Shehu says a decision will be made Saturday at the inauguration of Ghana's new president. Gambia's President Yahya Jammeh conceded defeat in the Dec. 1 vote, then later demanded a new...
(AFP (eng) 01/06/17)
Nigeria's presidency on Friday said a "major decision" would be taken this weekend on the crisis in The Gambia caused by veteran strongman Yahya Jammeh's refusal to step down after elections. President Muhammadu Buhari's spokesman Garba Shehu said African leaders would meet in Accra on Saturday after the inauguration of Ghana's new president, Nana Akufo-Addo. Jammeh, in power for 22 years, initially conceded defeat to opposition candidate Adama Barrow in elections last month but then announced he would contest the result. "A major decision on the impasse is expected to be taken at that all-important meeting,"

Pages