Gambia’s military chief reverse his pledge to Barrow

Army Chief Lt. Gen. Ousman Bargie, who had pledged allegiance to President-elect Adama Barrow has moved backward and made public his support for President Yahya Jammeh who has refused to leave power.

“I support the commander in chief, whoever it may be. I support commander in chief Jammeh,” Bargie said. “He pays my salary.”

Opposition leader and senior member of the Gambian bar Ousainou Darboe said Mr. Jammeh is still Mr. Bargie’s commander in chief but that Bargie’s salary is paid for by Gambian tax payers.

Gambia Army Chief Lt. Gen. Ousman Bargie arrives for a meeting with Ecowas delegation in Banjul. PHOTO: AP/ Sylvain Cherkaoui

Bargie on Tuesday met with West African leaders wearing a badged photo of President Jammeh on his uniform.

President Jammeh promoted 49 members of The Gambia Armed Forces, a move activists say was made to buy their loyalty and further divide the military.

General Bargie had called President-elect Barrow when he was declared the winner to congratulate him. Gambians hope that Barrow, a political novice, will bring about freedom and economic stability.

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