West African leaders arrive in Abuja for talks on Gambia

West African leaders arrive in Abuja for talks on Gambia

West African leaders have arrived in Nigeria’s capital, Abuja for a three-day summit that has put a political impasse in its smallest nation, The Gambia on the top of its agenda.

Four West African presidents returned from Banjul on Tuesday after a fact-finding mission and holding talks with President Yahya Jammeh who refuses to step down after losing elections.

West African leaders agreed that President Jammeh must hand over power to President-elect Adama Barrow within the constitutional deadline.

The situation has led the country into a political crisis as the President-elect Adama Barrow has threatened to swear himself in as substantive president when the tenure of outgoing Yahya Jammeh runs out on January 18.

ECOWAS Commission President Marcel de Souza told French media that ECOWAS is looking towards diplomatic measure for Jammeh to hand over but will not rule out using military force to uphold the will of The Gambian people.

(Reporting by Mustapha Darboe, Writing by Sam Phatey, Editing by Alhagie Jobe)

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