The Gambia’s main opposition APRC party has decried the refusal of the police to issue a permit to celebrate the 23rd anniversary of the coup that brought its demoralized leader, Yahya Jammeh to power.
The chair of the party, Fabakary Tombong Jatta accused authorities in the West African nation of violating their right to assembly and association.
Gambia’s President Adama Barrow, who sensationally defeated Jammeh in last year’s elections warned against the celebration of the coup vowing to crack a whip on anyone that take to the streets to celebrate the day.
It would be inconceivable, given the obvious historical perspective, to expect that the 22nd of July military coup d’État will continue to be celebrated,” said Mr. Barrow.
Former President Jammeh took power in 1994 by overthrowing the country’s first post-colonial leader, Sir Dawda Jawara in a “bloodless coup.”
Jammeh’s government had a long track record of using arbitrary arrests, threats, enforced disappearance, torture, and extra judicial executions to silence opposition voices and perceived enemies.
Gambians say memories are still fresh of the brutality that the July 22nd coup brought on Gambians and activists have called on the government not to allow the celebration of subversion of the will of people and decades of human rights abuses.