Gambia’s President Adama Barrow has rescinded the ambassadorial appointment of the country’s former army chief, replacing him with a former non-profit worker.
Lt. Gen. Ousman Bargie was deployed to Cuba as the country’s chief envoy after Barrow came to power. He declined to array troops to thwart a military intervention by regional forces to flush ex-President Yahya Jammeh out of power.
Since his appointment as Ambassador to Cuba, the former military chief has been in Banjul, where he received training in diplomatic etiquette.
Bargie could be given a new role in the government. His dramatic behavior during the impasse, offering flowers and tea to West African soldiers had built a fan-base around him and has since turned himself into a celebrity.
Bargie is no stranger to controversy after appearing to declare support for president-elect Adama Barrow and then switching back to Jammeh after the ex-president repeatedly refuses to step down despite losing a December 1 election in 2016.
Bargie will be replaced by Dr. Kujejatou Manneh, the former Executive Director of Action Aid – The Gambia. Gambia’s last Ambassador to Cuba, Lt. Gen. Masanneh Kinteh is now the country’s army chief.