minister of Foreign Affairs International Cooperation and Gambians Abroad,
Lawyer Ousainou Darboe, has opined that the ousted former Gambian President
Yahya Jammeh was going to remove The Gambia from both UN and ECOWAS if he had
won the election.
“I don’t know of any reason (s) Jammeh has given as to why he pulled out from the Commonwealth. He said it is a neo-colonial institution. And I would have thought that he would also go out of the UN; after all, the UN was set-up by past colonial powers; so that was his reason. But then, really I think he wanted to avoid scrutiny by his peers,” he added.
Mr. Darboe, who is also the secretary general and party leader of the United Democratic Party (UDP) made these remarks in an exclusive interview with this reporter at his office in Banjul.
The Foreign Affairs minister added that before Jammeh withdraws Gambia’s membership from the Commonwealth, they were pushing for the establishment of the Human Right Commission and he didn’t listen. “He did not want anybody to look into his human rights record; that commission would be one avenue through which the performance of his government’s human rights issues could be looked into.”
“You know there was a time he was even saying that ‘I will go out of any sub-regional organisation that is neo-colonial.’ So he was even prepared to get us out of ECOWAS if they had gone telling him what he was doing was wrong; you cannot do this; you have to change your ways,” he disclosed.
Assessment of Barrow’s one hear in government
Asked to highlight some of the success stories of the Barrow administration, Minister Darboe said he would really want Gambians to assess them. However, he said returning to the Commonwealth is a major foreign policy achievement; “that’s a huge gigantic step.”
“At the time we were taking over; we just had four weeks income cover. Now have four months and it is increasing and the economic is speaking up,” he said. “We have broken this isolation position of The Gambia; we have now been embraced by the international communities.”
Minister Darboe also described the international conference center among other projects brought by the Barrow government as a milestone achievement. The Ministry of Trade, he went on, is also trying hard in getting investors to come to the country.
“We are not like Jammeh shouting that; very soon you will see people coming from England to be your dishwasher in The Gambia. We are very realistic and we know what we are capable of doing. And what we are capable of doing; we are doing it without shouting,” he stressed.