Horomsi: If the information I received from this State House insider, is to go by, President Yahya Jammeh is likely to hand over the country to General Lang Tombong Tamba pretty soon. Lang has been tipped as Jammeh’s next “successor.” The President has hinted about his intention to hand “over the country” to Lang Tombong Tamba, in too distance future, according to  well placed sources handling classified files at the State House in Banjul. It’s not clear,  what might have necessitated Jammeh’s proposed action to hand over the country,but Lang himself had confided to a close friend of his about “his future leadership.” Our source quoted Tamba of having said that the President had “assured him of being his next successor” in the future, but should “keep the military out of active politics.”  President Jammeh is increasingly worried about his leadership “failure” amid international isolation and economic collapse befalling the West African country. Handing over the country to the Civilian population is out it for now. For Jammeh, he believes that with Lang replacing him, he might have a smooth stay in The Gambia, without facing any form of persecution from the new government. Tamba’s recent promotion as “General” was done for a purpose.

According to insiders at the GAF Head Quarters in Banjul, the nation’s main Security Command, General Tamba’s salary was far  above salaries of Secretaries of State and under his new appointment he is in charge of internal security in the country. ”All indications suggested that he would succeed President Jammeh one day. He is more powerful than the Vice President, Speaker and Edward Singhatey, the pioneer of the July 22ND coup. Lang receives nothing less than D20,000 Dalasi as salary. He is treated as a President and had guards at his disposal. This story of him replacing Jammeh has been circulating in our barracks and offices for a while now. He is a harmless person though, but can be easily be manipulated. Jammeh is using him for a purpose. He reached a truce with Jammeh, just like what obtained in Nigeria, during the days of the military. He promoted Lang for a purpose.” said a close aide of the President.

Jammeh handing over the country to the military would only reversed the country’s “fragile democracy.” The military had a bad record when it comes to governance in Africa. They brought “untold sufferings and underdevelopment” to the continent. If lang Tombong Tamba is really serious about his leadership desire, he should resign from the force if that’s to happen. The last thing the Gambian people would  hate  to see is another “Kaki uniform soldier” at the State House. These soldiers with a “Difference” are bandits undermining democracy in The Gambia and Africa as a whole. We had enough with Yahya Jammeh. Let the military stay in the barracks and allow the Civilian populace to run this country.

Today, President Jammeh would be panicking to death. He would be interested to know who must have compromised such a “top official secret” about his plans to hand over the country to General Tamba. His own intelligence community are not in the picture. Besides, Jammeh, Lang and his friend no one is in the picture. Jammeh said so many bad things against the Mandingka tribe. For Jammeh, the Mandingkas should not be allowed to rule the Gambia anymore. He wants his own people to take charge of the affairs of the state.

A permanent Secretary at the office of the President remarked “This country is not run by Jammeh, but is governed  by General Tamba and few “Jolla boys” in the Service. The President relied wholly and surely on these people to run this country. Most of these arrests, sacking and redeployment you are hearing, are being coordinated by these people. The President believes in these people more than us the technocrats. We are just here serving our country, but technically speaking we have been rendered redundant. That’s the truth. I also heard about Lang succeeding him one day.”

The Perm Sec said most of their colleagues were sacked and detained on “false charges.” The President said the Per Sec don’t even have time to attend to pressing official functions. “He relied on his right hands in the Security forces to run this country. He had side lined the Vice President and Edward Singhatey. He is contemplating ways and means of discarding them. He has divided the cabinet into camps. No one trust each other here.” said the Perm Sec.

According to these well placed sources, The Gambian leader had since  invited  Lang to the State House and at his Kanilai villa for private discussions to chart way forward to strategize plans for his succession. What many people here  cannot understand is that how can a military man in active duty succeed Jammeh. Perhaps, Lang might retire from the army and head the APRC if the said report is to go by then.

Naming the Vice President as his successor or the Speaker Fatou Jahumpa Ceesay would have make  more sense than identifying an army officer, who had no formal leadership training. President Jammeh  should do justice to his colleagues and consider handing over the country to Edward Singhatey or the VP Isatou Njie Saidy. Lang is a wrong choice for us. Let put tribal politics aside and put the general interest of the Gambian ahead.

Posted on Monday, June 18, 2007 (Archive on Monday, July 16, 2007)
Posted by PNMBAI  Contributed by PNMBAI
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