UN team in Gambia to identify areas that need urgent assistance

UN team in Gambia to identify areas that need urgent assistance

A UN team led by officials from the Department of Political Affairs and the UN Development Programme (UNDP) arrived in The Gambia to assess post-Yahya Jammeh situation, following successful takeover of power by President Adama Barrow.

Farhan Haq, the Deputy Spokesperson for the UN Secretary-General, told UN correspondents at a news conference on Wednesday that the mission arrived in the country on Tuesday.

The UN team has met Gambian political parties at the UN House on Thursday morning and they also met members of the civil society.

The UN resident coordinator Ade Mamonyane Lekoetje last week said that the team was in Banjul to help the new government identify areas that need urgent attention for assistance.

Gambia’s new President Adama Barrow has told diplomats that the country is in a near-bankruptcy situation with less than two months import cover.

Haq said the UN team would “assess the situation with regard to peace and security and analyze the new government’s priorities going forward.

“It will also assess governance and institutional capacities in the country and map out support strategies by international stakeholders engaging in peace-building,” said Haq.

“The mission met today with President Barrow, after meeting with the vice-president, the Foreign Minister, the Country Team working in The Gambia, and representatives of the diplomatic community in the country.”

Jammeh, who was defeated in the country’s Dec. 1 presidential election by Barrow after 22 years in power, reneged on his concession of defeat and refused to peacefully hand over to his successor.

The former president only accepted to leave after a UN-backed mediation by ECOWAS and AU, which had UN Security Council mandate to use every possible way to remove him, broke a deal to avoid the use of force.

Jammeh finally left Banjul on January 21 for exile in Equatorial Guinea after a protracted political crisis in the country.

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