Last week Tuesday saw a ‘terrorist’ attack on State House. Allegedly sponsored by a US-based Gambian businessman, Cherno Njie, the attackers some of whom have been reportedly killed were identified as exiled former Gambian soldiers who are based in the US, UK and Germany as well as former U.S soldiers of Gambian origin. Two have made it back to the US and are facing criminal charges.
Addressing the Assembly during debate on a motion for adoption of a resolution condemning the attack, the ruling party NAM, Sainey Mbye, said: “The United States is becoming a safe haven for terrorists. I was a little bit worried when I read in the media that the American government and some other countries were trying to condemn this terrorist attack. They called it a coup, but to me and many others, this was not a coup, but a terrorist attack. The American government is one of those championing the fight against terrorism, but these people who came to attack this country are based in the United States, Germany and United Kingdom. These Gambians in the United States are not hiding.
“They even went on to establish their own media houses, calling each other to instigate problem in their native country. What should America do if what they are saying in the fight against terrorism is real? One of the conditions to grant anybody asylum is for the [asylum-seeker] to maintain the peace in that country [where he is seeking asylum] and his country of origin as well. The coup or the terrorist leader who came to this country by the name Lamin Sanneh was based in the United States. The Americans know these people and if they want to condemn or stop terrorism, they should make sure that they get these people. They were looking for Bin Laden for how many years? But these people are not hiding and they should arrest them. These people are terrorists. You are leaving those people to go and build up again and come and attack when we can stop it at this particular time.”
Worse than Ebola
In another denunciation, the National Assembly Member for Banjul Central, Abdoulie Saine, characterised the attack as more dangerous than Ebola,adding: “If Ebola is detected, those people [victims] could be rounded up and confined in a particular place to prevent the disease from circulating. But, in the event of a terrorist attack, it would definitely circulate across the whole country. That is why I said it is even worse than the Ebola Virus. It would have been something that nobody would know the start and end of. If you want to rule this country, there is a process and it is very simple. You should go through that process and if the people of this country really want you to lead them, you will lead them but not in this way.”]]>