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No deal in sight as ECOWAS-AU-UN coalition insists Jammeh must quit


President of Liberia Ellen Johnson Sirleaf arrives at a hotel in Banjul on December 13, 2016, for a meeting with regional West African leaders in a bid to persuade veteran leader Jammeh to accept his election defeat and hand over power. SEYLLOU / AFP

President of Liberia Ellen Johnson Sirleaf arrives at a hotel in Banjul on December 13, 2016, for a meeting with regional West African leaders in a bid to persuade veteran leader Jammeh to accept his election defeat and hand over power. SEYLLOU / AFP

*Gambian parties, Fayose differ over Buhari’s credentials to mediate

Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has said there is no deal yet for Gambian leader Yahya Jammeh to quit.

Johnson Sirleaf, the acting head of the Joint Economic Community of West African States, African Union and United Nations (ECOWAS-AU-UN) team, said late on Tuesday that an agreement could take longer.

The team, made up of President Muhammadu Buhari, Johnson-Sirleaf, the Chairperson of ECOWAS, President Ernest Bai Koroma of Sierra Leone, outgoing President John Mahama of Ghana, and Dr. Mohammed Ibn Chambas, (UN Special Representative for West Africa), urged Jammeh to reconsider his rejection of the election results.

The team was insistent that Jammeh hand over power “within constitutional deadlines, and in accordance with electoral laws of The Gambia.”

Johnson-Sirleaf said discussions on The Gambian impasse would continue as ECOWAS leaders meet in Abuja this Saturday.

Meanwhile, the coalition of seven political parties that produced Adama Barrow, President-elect of The Gambia, has said that it looked earnestly to Nigeria’s President Buhari to deploy his vast experience, alongside other African leaders, to resolve the political logjam in the small West African country.

One of the members, Hamad Bah, said: “We need the experience of President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria in many ways. Like President Jammeh, he is a former military officer, so he knows how the military thinks, and would be able to talk to him appropriately.”

The high-level team, in series of meetings that lasted the whole of Tuesday, met with Jammeh twice, conferred with Barrow, consulted with security chiefs, members of the diplomatic community, leadership of the electoral commission, and many other interest groups .

In Nigeria, Ekiti State Governor Ayodele Fayose has described President Buhari’s involvement as an aberration.

According to him, great Africans like former President Goodluck Jonathan, President John Mahama of Ghana and others who have lost elections and accepted defeat were in the best position to intervene in Gambia and not someone like Buhari.

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  • barriga bello

    Sir, (Mr. President), please remember the last discussion we had, simply put – “Do not pay attention to every word people say, or you may hear your servant cursing you.” Allow the boys to respond to every altercation from gov. Moonbeam of Ekiti state. Like it, hate it or both (your prerogative).

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  • Pius Odiaka

    i like Governor Fayose as a good opposition material to improve governance in Nigeria, but not when he undermines the international integrity of the nation. Domestic partisan politics must always be eschewed at any international engagement by all politicians in the country. Fayose please understand this great principle of international diplomacy. It makes America great. I recommend that every political leader in Nigeria must learn or embrace it.

    • Tom O

      APC didn’t respect this principle while they were in opposition. On one occasion, they even abused President Jonathan while he was on a foreign tour and berated his host head of state for receiving him. So it’s unfair to condemn Fayose for giving them a dose of their own medicine.

  • sammy728

    This Moron and thug from Ekiti State is using the anything goes politics of the United States in Nigeria. Freedom of expression does not mean unlimited and unrestricted freedom. It’s a very dangerous road. People of good conscience should stop Fayose now before like minds join him in destroying whats left of our country. As a governor, he has no business in foreign policy. This is the guy that want absolute immunity, power,and no accountability to anything he does in Ekiti, but at the same time rob is nose to all that the president said or do. from the time he went to China when the president was there, and make provocative remarks on the presidency. I know why PMB is giving him pass, the ghost of decree 2 of 1980’s, but Fayose cannot be left unchecked, other wise he will damage Nigeria beyond repair domestic and foreign. He is a thug, a killer, and armed robber in power. He will say, and do anything to remain relevant. Money that Obanikoro ferried to him in an aircraft before the governor election, is more than enough atrocity to put this guy away for good. The money was from common wealth purse and he has no immunity when the act was committed. Why wait?



    • Tom O

      Fayose has the right to his opinion. APC as opposition party never accorded any respect to President Jonathan and the man to his credit never took them up on that. So PMB should take it on the chin. That is democracy for you.