Gambia’s army recruiting Barrow’s bodyguards, coalition security team

Gambia’s army recruiting Barrow’s bodyguards, coalition security team

A team of bodyguards that protected members of the coalition government during the campaign leading to the elections and the political crisis are being recruited into the security services.

Most of the former coalition security guards will be in the army and others will be sent to the State Intelligence Services, and Drug Law Enforcement, security sources say.

The Gambia Armed Forces are screening them and have cleared a handful of the security volunteers for Mr. Barrow and senior members of the coalition.

A report on the state of reforms at the State Intelligence Agency revealed that a bodyguard to Mr. Barrow during the campaign and political impasse was in fact, a spy for ex-President Yahya Jammeh.

Barrow is now being protected by the police and West African forces, while the elite presidential guards get integrated into other units of the army.

Gambia is struggling to rebuild its army amid reports that Jammeh’s loyalists still hold a strong influence.

At least four soldiers suspected of mutiny have been arrested this week but the military declined to give further details about their plans.

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