Time has come to bring Yahya Jammeh and the APRC to the international Criminal Court of Justice. Gambians in Diaspora, the international community and the Security Council must now take the first proactive steps towards prosecuting JAMMEH. The international community must lobby the Security Council to act immediately.
Virtually all international reports on Gambia, including those of Jammeh’s regime, have given consistent factual information and statistics that point to a country that is in a free fall, a country that’s social, political, economic, health, and agricultural systems have all but collapsed. Democracy and the rule of law are outlawed by the increasingly panicky and unstable Jammeh regime that is even afraid and suspicious of its own shadow.
These are clearly signs of a dysfunctional Jammeh. Like a naughty school boy, he has had the gall to use graffiti language to insult the very same people who are trying to help him out of the mess he has created.
Jammeh has consistently used the international forums he has attended as a pulpit to preach the gospel of hatred. He has lambasted the West for no justifiable reason. Talk of biting the hand that feeds you! Those are visible signs of a decaying and criminal mind of Jammeh.
In less than 20 years, the number of Gambians officially classified as poor has doubled to 80 percent of the country’s population. In others words eight out of every 10 Gambians are absolutely poor. There is no more middle class in Gambia. It is now a country of very rich few and masses living in abject poverty.
Jammeh’s mismanagement of the country and the economy has set Gambia back. Life in Gambia is exactly what it used to be in 1940s. Human rights abuse, sanctioned by Jammeh, is the order of the day in Gambia. Human rights organizations monitoring the situation on the ground report continued harassment and violence, against opposition supporters.
Freedom of speech and the press are a non- existent luxury. Elections are routinely rigged to the extent that it is now practically impossible to defeat Jammeh through the ballot box.
The map of Africa today is undergoing a major transformation under new winds of change. Democracy, basic human rights and the freedom of the press are being embraced in many parts of Africa. All of Gambia’s neighbors are a visible evidence of a new democratic culture that is gaining roots.
Yet Gambia under Jammeh remains the odd man out, refusing to change with the time and stubbornly balking at the notion of democracy, the rule of law and basic human rights. Jammeh has clearly violated a cardinal tenet of the UN charter. It is time for the Security Council to act decisively on Jammeh.
He and his cronies must be brought before the International Criminal Court of Justice. They will of course not come voluntarily. But they can be tried in absentia. Let the world note that Gambia is being ruled by criminals.
Written By Sulaiman Leigh UK