Written by Pa Nderry M’Bai
The APRC Administrative Secretary Mambanyick Njie says he was misquoted by the Standard Newspaper. He has denied saying that Jammeh’s home return was not part of the MOU agreement that the two parties: NPP and the APRC had signed.
“I was misquoted by the Standard Newspaper. The caption of their story doesn’t represent what I told reporter Omar Bah. As a journalist, I know the craft, we always want to sensationalize stories just to sell newspapers. The story was sensationalized. I never said Jammeh’s home return was not part of NPP/APRC alliance MOU agreement,” Mr. Njie clarified.
Njie made the clarification in an interview with the NPP’s Abubcarr Suso. He pointed out that the issue of Jammeh’s home return lies in the hands of The Gambian government.
“ What I told the Standard Reporter was that the APRC/NPP alliance was reached between the two parties, that it has nothing to do with Government. The agreement was between the two parties and not the government. The caption of their story never reflected what I said. I never said Jammeh’s home return was not part of the APRC/NPP merger agreement,” the NPP Administrative Secretary further clarified.
Mr. Njie had served under Jammeh’s rule as a Permanent Secretary. He is not a stranger to the APRC.
His clarification followed Ousman Rambo Jatta’s rebuttal of the Standard publication. Jatta, who is the APRC Deputy Leader told the Star FM radio that the Standard publication was false and the statement that was attributed to Mambanyick Njie was fabricated.
“The Standard Newspaper caption that was attributed to me, wasn’t my statement. I never said what they reported. The reporter asked me about Yahya Jammeh’s issue and I told him that issues relating to Jammeh lies in the hands of the government. That the agreement that was signed was confined to the two political parties. I told him that the agreement that was signed between the APRC and the NPP was between the two parties and not The Gambian government. This was what I told reporter Omar Bah,” Njie stated.
Mr. Njie also pointed out that he did state in his Standard interview that Jammeh cannot be excluded in Gambia’s reconciliation process. He cited Ivory Coast, where its former dictator Laurent Gbagbo was allowed to return home after he was freed by the International Criminal Court on crimes against humanity charges. He said in the spirit of reconciliation Gbagbo was allowed to return home by President Alassane Ouattara.
Njie has praised Jammeh for bringing development in The Gambia during his interview with the NPP surrogate.
“The truth be told, Jammeh has brought development in this country. It would be dishonest for anyone to say that Jammeh hasn’t done any development in this country. Jammeh has contributed immensely towards Gambia’s development infrastructure: ranging from building hospitals, roads, schools, you name them. No one is perfect. People are bound to make mistakes. I have always defended the APRC. Throughout the TRRC proceedings, no member or official of the APRC was called before the commission, or cited for torture, or killing of people. The security forces were called at the TRRC and not the APRC members. This is what I told the West Coast radio during my interview with them. I told the same thing to Omar Bah, but the caption of his story was wrong,” Njie stated.
Meanwhile, the Standard reporter Omar Bah contacted us late Wednesday evening, saying that he wanted to react to Ousman Rambo Jatta’s piece. He was advised by our Editor to send a rejoinder and he agreed.