President Muhammadu Buhari has said his administration played a key role in ousting former Gambian President, Yahya Jammeh, because it was the last thing it could do in leading the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) in the onslaught against the sit-tight presidents. According to a statement made available to newsmen by his spokesman, Femi Adesina, Buhari disclosed this to the incumbent Gambian leader, Adama Barrow, who paid him a courtesy visit at the Presidential Villa, yesterday. Buhari told his Gambian counterpart that African leaders could not stop educating people that they were doing themselves a lot of favour when they do the right things in a democracy. “The future of our countries lies in our hands.
We must respect our people, and appreciate their support. And when the people do the right things, they do themselves a lot of favour,” the President said. Nigeria played a key role in ousting former President Yahya Jammeh, who had refused to accept results of election he lost in 2016, and the Nigerian leader said it was the least the country could do, in leading an ECOWAS onslaught against the sit-tight president.
“I was in Gambia physically at least two times. It was the least we could do to stabilize the region. We’ve accepted multi-party democracy, and we must comply with its tenets. By supporting you, we were supporting ECOWAS. We are dealing with our own troubles here, but we will continue to support you bilaterally, and through ECOWAS,” the Nigerian leader added. As The Gambia goes to the polls next year, President Buhari pledged Nigeria’s support in different ways possible.
Barrow said his visit was actually to say thank you to Nigeria once again for its multifarious helps, noting that the support had been unflinching since he got to office in 2017. “You have given us technical support in the Ministry of Education, in Ministry of Justice, and in many other areas. We are grateful,” the Gambian President said. Barrow disclosed that The Gambia is recovering from 22 years of dictatorship, security problems, lack of infrastructure and a parlous economy.
He also revealed that a Truth and Reconciliation Commission is also sitting, to redress injustices of the past and heal the injuries. Going forward, the Gambian leader said his country still needs Nigeria’s stabilizing force “as things would have been very difficult for us without the invaluable support you gave.”