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23 Jan 2020 | 04:06 AM UTC

Gambia: Protests scheduled in Banjul January 25, 26 /update 3

Demonstrations planned in Banjul on January 25, 26; heightened security presence and localized transportation disruptions expected

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Event

The Gambia Center for Victims of Human Rights Violations civil society group has called for a march in Banjul on Saturday, January 25, to denounce calls for former President Yahya Jammeh's return by the Alliance for Patriotic Reorientation and Construction (APRC) political party. Participants plan to meet as of 08:00 (local time) at the Buffer Zone, before marching to Westfield Monument.

On another note, the Three Years Jotna political opposition group has called for protests on Sunday, January 26, to call on President Adama Barrow to honor his agreement to step down from office after serving a three-year term.

Heightened security measures, counter-protests, and transportation disruptions are likely in the vicinity of any demonstration site. Similar protests are possible over the coming days and weeks.

Context

Former President Yahya Jammeh went into political exile on January 21, 2017, after losing the December 2016 presidential elections, stepping down from power after 22 years in office. In March 2017, Gambian political parties signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that included that current President Adama Barrow would serve a transitional three-year term. However, Barrow has indicated that he intends to remain in office for five years, the standard term length withing the Gambian constitution. Tensions remain high between pro- and anti-Jammeh supporters.

Advice

Individuals in Gambia, and in Banjul in particular, are advised to exercise caution and maintain a low profile at all times, avoid all protests and demonstrations as a precaution, and obey any instructions issued by the local authorities.