Image by: Jason Florio/IRIN, © All Rights Reserved

Ex-Gambian dictator ransacked presidential palace before fleeing

Exiled Gambian leader, Yahya Jammeh vandalized properties in the presidential compound before jetting to Equatorial Guinea, Information Minister Demba Jawo said.

The State House ( the equivalent of The White House) was ransacked and electrical wiring tampered with.

Desktops and files were destroyed by Jammeh’s men. Executive desks, chairs, and filing cabinets were also left broken and scattered.

Digital cameras and computer hard drives were destroyed and some digital files taken from The State House.

The cameras and hard drives are suspected to have contained information on human rights abuses, financial transactions, and business dealings.

Jammeh’s regime videotaped the torture and killing of political rivals, rights defenders, and journalists for the viewing pleasure of the ousted autocratic ruler.

Gambian authorities have also seized his domestic properties accusing him of corruption and stealing of billions from the state.

Minister Jawo said the extent of the damage is being measured and warned that those that took part in the vandalism will be held liable.

Jammeh had purportedly stuffed the air conditioning system with poisoned powder, reports that the new presidential protection detail refuted.

The reports were reportedly part of the reasons that prevented President Adama Barrow from running the state from the capital, Banjul.

President Barrow has been using the Vice President’s residence as his office while waiting for the State House to be repaired.

(Image by: Jason Florio/IRIN, © All Rights Reserved)

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