By Omar Bah
The APRC executive committee led by Fabakary Tombong Jatta, has culled from its ranks members who were named as constituting an interim executive committee by former president Yahya Jammeh a week ago.
Last Friday, Jammeh declared the removal of Jatta’s committee for entering an alliance with President Barrow’s NPP without his permission.
He said he “revoked” the alliance and instructed his new committee to back the Gambia Alliance for National Unity (Ganu) and its leader Sheikh Tijan Hydara.
Jatta’s committee rejected this and insisted they are the legal and bonafide committee, a position which was supported by the Independent Electoral Commission.
Addressing journalists at the APRC head office in Manjai yesterday, Mr Jatta announced that national youth mobiliser Abdou Jarju and Bakary Saibo Sanneh are no longer members of the APRC national executive with the former being replaced by his deputy, Pa Matarr Ndow. Former deputy chief of protocol, Muhammed Lamin Jammeh, has also been excised from the committee and accused of being the source of leaks of confidential issues discussed by the committee.
Jatta also instructed the APRC secretariat to write to the IEC and the Gambia Police Force to ensure that Sheikh Tijan Hydara and Ganu do not use APRC symbols.
Explaining his reasons for removing the Jatta-led committee, Jammeh said he did not consent to the alliance with NPP.
But during yesterday’s presser, Jatta maintained the former president was in the know.
“I swear to the Holy Qur’an that when it was happening, Ousman ‘Rambo’ Jatta and Yankuba Colley were present and the telephone was on loud speaker. The person Jammeh sent to me on this very issue is here,” he explained.
Jatta reiterated that the NPP-APRC alliance “is done in the best interest of the country and Yahya Jammeh”.
“I have conscience and no one can bribe me. We are more committed to the alliance now than ever before and I urge all APRC supporters and well-meaning Gambians to vote for President Barrow because that is in the best interest of this country,” he said.
He advised that despite the rancour, APRC supporters should desist from using foul language against Jammeh.
“We all know he was ill-advised to make such a decision. So we will not take revenge on him because he has led this great party for 22 years with due diligence and under no circumstances should we insult him. If he decides to insult us, let us take it in good faith,” he added.