Saturday, March 8, 2014
Former Ghanaian-born Chief Justice takes refuge at an Embassy in Banjul
No explanation was given as to why the Chief Justice was dismissed. However, during the swearing-in of the newly appointed Pakistani-born Chief Justice, the starling revelation was made by the Gambian dictator that the former Chief Justice is "being hidden by a particular embassy". Jammeh described the embassy providing refuge to an embattled Justice as "an embassy whose country is hostile to our country", which limits our search to a couple of Embassies in a country that has less that six embassies in total.
The question that is now in the minds of many Gambians and Ghanaian alike is what triggered this diplomatic stand-off between an increasingly hostile regime in the face of increasing international pressure over the regimes poor human rights record, a Western country and Ghana.
Even though Jammeh did not leveled a particular charge that is criminal in nature against the highly respected former Chief Justice, Jammeh implied, during a televised lecture carried by the government-controlled television and radio, that she is a thief and a criminal. His rationale for leveling such a brazen and malicious charge is because she 'disappeared' after she was informed of the decision to dismiss her.
According to the Gambian dictator, even though her salary was being paid by the Gambia government, she was "taking orders from elsewhere... a hostile embassy". Jammeh claimed that his regime knows where she is and they "will deal with the embassy concerned" in the end.
Jammeh's rambling speech did not deviate from his usual style, accusing the West of being hostile to his regime - a tirade of historical revisionism with the spurious claim of 400 years of British colonialism that has become his latest tactic, designed to distract attention from an increasing irate and dissatisfied populace who are faced with the worst economic crisis in post-Independent Gambia.
The diplomatic fall-out from the incident is uncertain, given the unpredictable and erratic nature of Jammeh's behavior. What is certain is safe passage will be secured for the former Chief Justice because Ghana and her many Western friends will see to that. Meanwhile, the diplomatic isolation of the worst dictatorship in Africa continues.