Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Has the petroleum saga started to haunt Jammeh?

Yaya Jammeh is a master at fabricating 'facts' and framing civil servants before discarding them after they've been used to do his dirty job. He's routinely used this tactic throughout 22-year of his dictatorship.

Immediately following his framing of charges against the leaders of the political party that poses the biggest threat to his regime that landed dozens of them in jail, he turned his attention to the Petroleum Ministry and senior officials of the Gambia National Petroleum Corporation whom he accused of embezzling US$ 12 million from the procurement of petroleum and petroleum products from March Petroleum, a Dubai-based company.

In a nationally televised meeting with elders in the capital city of Banjul, the Gambian dictator falsely claimed that March Petroleum did not exist, that it was a bogus company the officials created for the purpose of defrauding the state.  A simple google search proved otherwise, that indeed that March Petroleum is a legitimate company.

Obviously, any respectable company that has done business with a client that turns and falsely and a self-serving way labeled it as an illegitimate outfit will not only take offense but may use legal means to seek redress.

Recognizing that his lies are blatantly clear  to those whose lives have been impacted by charges that may not necessarily reflect reality, Jammeh has started to rethink his approach.  Firstly, Sira Wally Ndow-Njie, the former Minister of Petroleum and until she was charged with "economic crime" served as Deputy Minister of Tourism, one of two principal individuals central to the petroleum scandal was denied bail by judge Ottaba at the instruction of Jammeh,  She has been a central figure and in the inner cabal of Jammeh's circle of public officials who traveled the globe on behalf of Jammeh.

The former Petroleum minister's travelling companion was Mr. Sana Jarju who was Deputy Protocol Officer before assuming the Chief of Protocol post when Alagie Ceesay was fired for the umpteenth time.  It was not long before Sana Jarju suffered the same fate.  He left and resettled in the United States where he's seeking asylum.

As the scandal starts to unravel that threatens to expose unpleasant truths about Jammeh's spurious claims including the non-existence of March Petroleum, Jammeh has quietly re-appointed Sana Jarju in absentia as Chief of Protocol.  My sources view this decision as a ploy designed to lure him back to Banjul so that he can be silenced by banishing him to Mile II prison. Sanna Jarju and Sira Wally Ndow-Njie are two of with the most intimate knowledge of the petroleum saga tricks who may not be ready to play ball with the Gambian dictator.