President Jammeh criticizes foreign pressure for him to step down

Gambia’s President Yahya Jammeh has slammed foreign pressure for him to step down after suffering an election defeat last month in the hands of a little-known real estate developer, Adama Barrow.

Jammeh thrust the relatively peaceful West African nation into a political uncertainty after initially accepting defeat and making a shocking detour a week later rejecting the outcome of the election.

“Our review and investigations have revealed an unprecedented level of foreign interference in our elections and internal affairs and also a sustain smear campaign, propaganda, and misinformation,” Jammeh said.

Jammeh pilloried ECOWAS, the UN Security Council and the African Union – all bodies that have urged him to respect the election result – for taking “unprecedented and hasty resolutions against our republic and constitution.”

The longtime Gambian leader has accused ECOWAS mediators of bias and on Tuesday appointed his new Secretary General and Minister for Presidential Affairs as mediator general to find a lasting solution to the impasse.

Jammeh did not say if he is stepping down and did not identify how he seeks to find a peaceful solution to the crisis. He has until January 18 to hand over power to Mr. Barrow, who has vowed to swear himself in and declare Jammeh a rebel.

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