I mention a lot Kenya, in East Africa, but suddenly my attention focused on the Gambia. I have never been to Gambia but in Senegal I never heard anything good about it. Senegalese consider Gambia a renegade country full of contrabands, paradoxes and horror stories.
I have a soft spot for Senegal allowing a few Haitian students, after the earthquake, to finish their university studies in his country.
President Abdoulaye Wade is not a saint; he built an atrocious 50 meters statue representing “African Renaissance” at a cost of 26 millions Euros while his people live in poverty and nurtures his son Karim as the next president.
So my soft spot is only about him accepting Africa’s role in the atrocities of the slave trade.
The Gambia, a peanut exporter of less than 2 millions citizens, smack inside Senegal, is the smallest country in Africa.
The majority of its citizen live in poverty thanks to their president Yayhia Jammeh. I am sorry he likes to be called by his full title His Excellency the President Sheik Professor Alhaji Doctor Yahya Jammeh. I understand his university credentials, nothing new in Africa, are bogus.
Some Gambian elders, old uneducated morons stuck in an era of stone-age rules, a culture of bush wars and slave trades, want to have this lunatic, probably delusional, 45 years old pudgy potion doctor crowned a king.
This quack, sorry but my keyboard refuses typing his full title, has been in power since 1994 and is running again in 2011.
Some good news; his wife Zineb Jammeh ran away, in September, to the USA with their two children. So, there is no worry for the moment in having the brood taking over daddy’s job.
I am sure the wife, stashed enough money to be financially liberated until her old days.
I don’t think she will come back; her husband is in love and already took a third wife, Alima Sallah age 21, last October. Yes, you are reading third wife.
Anyway, the elders want to have the quack crowned king as “a sign of gratitude for a leader who has done a lot for his country.”
The elders are probably using the financial report painting the country as a tourist’s paradise and a visionary powerhouse in economic growth. The official country agenda is full of the president “will do” and polite about the “has done”.
The president “has done” on human development is preposterous
Gambia found a very African solution to press freedom by nationalizing the media, jailing journalists and instituting punitive laws conducing to praise and love of the president and its entourage. He has publicly threatened with death Human right activists and on 20 May 2008 gave 24 hours for gays to leave the country and threaten them with beheading if arrested and closure of any hotels providing them services.
He seems that he has avoided half a dozen, real and unreal, attempts to have him dethroned. The last one was last year, 2009, and like Mugabe he blames the UK for plotting against him. Mugabetitis is contagious.
Looney tune mystic man voiced his wish to govern Gambia for the next 40 years. Ok, then he may as well be king.
Going royal is cheaper than running election. It avoids the headache of looking for innovative ways to cheat. You know, buying votes or stuffing urns.
Of course, that’s déjà vu! Gambia is in Africa isn’t!
- His majesty? Gambia president may become king (sfgate.com)
- His majesty? Gambia president may become king (seattletimes.nwsource.com)