Security Advisory: The Gambia (18 January 2017)January 19, 2017 in Gambia
The incumbent President, Yahya Jammeh, continues to contest the 1 December 2016 preidential election results at the Supreme Court. Th President-elect, Mr Adama Barrow, has lft the country and is currently in neighboring Senegal. The Economic Community ofWest African States (ECOWAS) has stated that it may intervene, including possible military action, if President Jammeh does not step down on the scheduled handover date of 19 January 2017. Increasing international pressure to step down has resulted in President Jammeh declaring a state of emergency on 17 January. The following day, the National Assembly announced that the president could remain in office for a further three months.
The Gambian government is divided over this issue, and in recent days a number of ministers have resigned. There have also been reports of restrictive measures being imposed, including the shutting down of opposition radio stations and politically motivated arrests.
Tensions remain high across the country and the ongoing political deadlock could lead to unrest. Due to the deteriorating political situation and potential military intervention following MS risk advises against all but essential travel to The Gambia. If you are currently in The Gambia, we advise that you should leave by commercial means if you have no essential need to remain. The potential for military intervention and civil disturbances remains high and this could result in Banjul International Airport being closed at short notice.
- Have a weeks supply of food and water as well as fuel
- Monitor travel advise and social media updates
- Avoid large crowds as they may turn violent with little notice
- Avoid discussing politically sensitive topics in public
- You should expect to see increased government forces traffic and presence if tensions increase
- If you are a visitor, remain in contact with your airline/tour operator and insurer.
- If you are visiting and staying in a hotel, identify the emergency procedures in place
MS Risk continues to closely monitor the situation in The Gambia and we will issue further bulletins as more information becomes available.