|Abdoulaye Balde, Mayor of Zinguinchor, Senegal|
Cultivating political alliance with the young and politically ambitious Abdoulaye Baldé may be seen as an act of desperation but Jammeh sees in the Mayor of Zinquinchor a useful regional ally with a common enemy in Macky Sall. Jammeh already has Salif Sadio, a factional leader of the MFDC. If he succeeds in forging a political alliance with Abdoulye Balde in addition to his military partnership with Salif Sadio, it will have the potential of posing a new threat in a region that Senegal and the United States had thought he had finally has the 35-year old low-intensity rebel war under control.
Abdoulaye Baldé and his delegation was invited to the Gambian capital of Banjul but were turned back at the border post of Siliti by Senegalese border patrol. Somehow some of the delegation were able to take the back road around Kanilai (Jammeh's home village) to honor his invitation. Mr.Baldé stayed home because he would not only be undignified but conspicuous should he followed suit. He also took the back road.
A strategy meeting is presently (Saturday evening, 30 April) taking place at the Flourish Hotel near the Palmarima Hotel in Kololi to discuss the need for a coordinated response which the participants - mainly Deputy or Assistant Mayors, chef des villages and local authorities who belong to Abdoulaye Baldé's l'Union Centriste du Senegal (U.C.S).
Among those in attendance on the Gambian side at the Flourish Hotel in Kololi were Jammeh's Interior Minister, Ousman Sonko and Kanifing Municipal Council Mayor Yankuba Colley. The Casamance delegation from the Sadiou and Kolda regions of southern Senegal.