Nigerian and other West African countries are preparing a joint force to intervene militarily in Gambia if President Yahya Jammeh does not hand over power, a Nigerian military source said on Tuesday.
“A decision has been taken that he will not remain president of Gambia at the expiration of his tenure,” the source said, referring to Jammeh.
A Ghanaian security analyst, Owusu Sekyere K Jnr, has warned that involvement of countries outside ECOWAS in any military offensive in Gambia could “create a Syria, Iraq and Libya episode where multiple interests could fester proxy wars and provide the platform for extremism or terrorism”.
For more on the analysis: Gambia – military intervention must be comprehensive & secure Gambia
Jammeh was declared loser in Gambia’s Dec. 1 elections to president-elect Adama Barrow who is due to be sworn in on Thursday.
However, the outgoing president said the electoral process was tainted with “unacceptable” anomalies but the Supreme Court that should hear his case was could not have judges.
Reuters story link: West African states prepare Gambia intervention unless Jammeh quits-source
Gambia imports Supreme Court judges from Nigeria and Serra Leone and the two countries have said they can’t send in judges until May or November.
Jammeh has filed an injunction to stop the inauguration of Barrow but the Chief Justice Emanuel Fagbele could not hear the case because he was a party to the application.
Jammeh maintains his position that the only solution to the political impasse is through the Supreme Court.
The team of opposition leader Barrow said they will hold the inauguration anyway.