This was just as last-minute attempts by Mauritanian President, Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz, to convince Jammeh to give up the presidency, failed. ”He has probably gone into hiding to stop further negotiation,” A Gambian journalist said. The embattled president’s tenure ended Wednesday midnight, although, he has insisted he won’t step down, despite losing the December 1 election.
Howevver, President-elect, Adama Barrow, had vowed to go ahead with his inauguration on Thursday, and ECOWAS, the regional bloc, had vowed to use military force if necessary to remove resolute Jammeh. Military Troops from Senegal, Nigeria and Ghana on Thursday remained in position in Senegal in case a military intervention becomes necessary.
An ECOMOG military Commander, Maiga Mboro told AP, “All the troops are already in place and some not far from the Gambian border. “Already 11 pilots, 11 crew members and 80 supporting troops have been deployed close to the Gambian border.”
Meanwhile, Barrow, who is been swearing-in today, affirmed that Jammeh’s tenure was “officially over”.
Gambia’s president-elect Adama Barrow has again appealed to outgoing President Yahya Jammeh to step aside in the supreme interest of his people and safe the Gambia from civil strive.
Mr Barrow said Mr Jammeh’s refusal to step down will result in a military confrontation and the loss of lives and destructions of public and private properties.
President Jammeh’s mandate expired on Wednesday but he is refusing to relinquish power to Adama Barrow, who was declared winner of last month’s election.