Ahead of a new deadline for embattled President Yahya Jammeh to step aside, a Gambian military general and commander of guards at the former leader’s home in Kanilai assures citizens that “the peace that the Gambia is known for will continue.”
Brigadier General Musa Savage was promoted to his new role and heading a counterterrorism unit after being named a key player in thwarting a botched coup hatched in the United States by dissidents, including his own former commander, Lt. Col. Lamin Sanneh.
General Savage on Thursday had said he was not aware he had a new commander-in-chief, saying there was no swearing-in Banjul.
Gambia’s new President Adama Barrow took the oath of office at the Gambian embassy in Dakar, the capital of neighboring Senegal, where he signed an executive order authorizing ECOMIG to dislodge Jammeh.
Mr. Barrow has given orders for Gambian soldiers to abandon their fighting positions and return to the barracks. He has warned those found armed without his orders that they will be regarded and treated as rebels.
Gambia’s military chief, Lt. Gen. Ousman Bargie was also quoted as saying he will not involve his men in a ‘stupid fight.’ Bargie was seen celebrating with a few hundred Gambians at a square outside the capital after Barrow was sworn-in.