Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Jammeh security chiefs advise him to tone down his rhetoric against Mandinka ethnic group

Prior to embarking on his campaign tour of the country, Jammeh's security chiefs had to pull him to the side and warned him to dial down his venomous rhetoric against the Mandinka ethnic group whom he had threatened to "bury nine feet deep" in his latest tirade.  He has also spuriously referred to them as foreigners who deserve to be deported.

As the presidential elections draw near, Jammeh finds himself in unfamiliar territory in his 22-year rule - a determined and unified opposition under the banner of a Coalition of 7-party opposition led by Hon. Adama Barrow who replaced the imprisoned Ousainou Darboe.

Jammeh's threats against one ethnic group was recently characterized as "inflammatory" by the United Nations.  The international body's Adviser on Genocide said he was "profoundly alarmed by President Jammeh's public stigmatization, dehumanization and threats against the Mandinkas." The international community did not take the threats lightly because "they can contribute by dividing populations, feed suspension and serve to incite violence against communities, based solely on their identity.

The incendiary rhetoric of Yaya Jammeh worries his party and members of the security forces that led to the admonition prior to his campaign trip.  Based on the reporting of the official mouthpiece of the regime, it appears that he is following advise.  Jammeh is preaching peace in Day One of his week's tour of the country where the reception will be lukewarm at best because Jammeh has failed Gambians, especially the rural population who are primarily farmers.  He has failed to improve the lives of ordinary Gambians who are poorer today than they were when Jammeh seized power in 1994 and it is showing in poor attendance of his first rally in Niumi yesterday.