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Archive for the tag “Gambia”

CEDEAO: La Deuxieme Session – Ordinaire du Parlement de la CEDEAO se Tient a Abuja (21.11.2019)

Yayah Jammeh Grand Heist: A summary of Volume 9 of Janneh Report

Yesterday, I dropped two pieces on this. Today it will be continuation and repetition. Since some of the facts remains the same, but it will more flesh to the bone. Because, the piece on the land grabbing of ex-President Yayah Jammeh of Gambia was from the White Paper yesterday. The volume 9 has more detail. Therefore, even if this will be brief and short in one way. Because, all the heists and all the siphoning of monies are grand schemes in itself. Which shows that the President misused his authority and his place in the state to eat and grab funds. That he wasn’t entitle too.

The ex-President with all his various schemes and tricks of his trade, while in office, makes him liable to repay the state back with the amounts of 1,065,012,512.17 GMB, $267,348,358.89, €29,475,269.00, £2,250,000.00 and finally 618,400.00 CFA. All of this monies was taken by the ex-President.

Like for instances the ex-President set up a lot illegal businesses in his time. List consist of Kanilai Family Farms (KFF) Kanilai Group International (KGI), Unique Transport Systems Company Ltd. (UTSCO), Sindola Safari Lodge (Sindola), Mineral Company of the Gambia Ltd, Westwood Gambia Ltd. (Westwood), Westport Logistics, Green Industries, Observer Company, Alhamdulillah Petroleum and Mineral Company (APAM). All of these companies grabbed land, used public accounts to run them and so fourth. They were all illegally set up and some even spent international grants given to The Gambia. This was the way the President operated.

Also, the Ex-President used his charities to siphon funds, he used government grants from Exim Bank (ROC), Japanese Grants, Nigeria Budget Support and others, which was supposed to go to development projects, but instead money went unaccounted for and went missing. He spent it and withdraw cash from the accounts, either himself or with help from loyal associates.

To continue with his illegal enterprises, the ex-President also took funds from State Owned Enterprises, these consisted of Gambia National Petroleum Company (GNPC), Social Security and Housing Finance Corporation (SSHFC), Gambia Ports Authority (GPA), Kanalai Culture Centre (KCC), Youth Development Enterprises Limited (YDE), Gambia Ferry Services Company (GFSC) and GAMTEL/GAMCEL. All of these state owned companies was used, taken monies from and embezzled at one point to the advantage of the President.

As the schemes goes along, the land grabbing needs to addressed. The ex-President took 19 TDA lands from the public. 114 free allocations of public lands in his disposal. That was in total a hundred and 139 land titles, which consist of 10 islands and 26 Wildlife Parks and Reserves.

This shows how he misused his power, taken vast amount of sums. This only what he did and not what his associates and family members did as well. Because, that would be to overwhelming for one small article. Still, this shows what sort of megalomania the ex-President did in his time from 1994 to 2017. As he spent time getting more and more funds, instead of governing.

Yayah Jammeh was busy finding new ways of earning profits, building businesses and taken the state for granted. Embezzling, siphoning and grand theft. This was his heist, a business model that he continued to work-on until his final day in office.

The ex-President wasn’t a bank-robber, but he emptied the accounts and the state machinery blessed him with it. He was the Head of State and no one questioned him. Until now, its two years since he was in office and now his sins is put into system. We see how man took it all and got away with it.

Let’s see if he repays the state, while in exile in Equatorial Guinea. Peace.

Yayah Jammeh Grand Heist: Janneh Report Vol. 9 states that his liable for $84m from Public Accounts and more!

There will come one day, when every dictator and tyrants acts comes into steady reports and reveals their actions. Today is one of those days. We are not seeing how the threaten and assaulted freedom, liberty and justice in Gambia. We are instead seeing how the previous head of state misused his power, how he earned money on his time in office and how he opened certain accounts to earn funds.

Here is just a snippet of the Volume 9 of the Janneh Report. What scope I am looking at is just what his directly taken from PUBLIC ACCOUNTS and nothing else. This is the money he took from public accounts and spent on himself. Nothing else. So consider this as one way of thieving. 

Which is stating a lot of facts by just saying that. It is showing what he did and to what extent. This is briefly stated to show it. I am only mentioning Jammeh, even if he got help form the rest of his ministers and secretary generals. Therefore, there are plenty more who has to repay the state for their ill gotten gains. But I am just focusing on the head of state, the one in-charge and how he misused public accounts. Just look!

In 1995, the government took out $35m loan from China Exim Bank. At this very moment, the President associated diverted funds and also took out direct cash-deposits. But the state hasn’t repaid on the debt during the tenure of the President. To top it off, $27,732,000 is not accounted for. Therefore, because of interests and need for back-pay, the ex-president is liable for $35,556,442.42.

In 1999, the former President opened up an foundation account at the Trust Bank Limited. Where he was given bribe of $2,555m and illegal authorized payments of $3,013,615.47. Which is both funds the state want have returned.

In 2007, the President diversified and misused profits made by selling shares in the state owned enterprise GAMTEL/GAMCEL. The President took $7,948,025.73 to buy 31 buses to start his own bus-company and other projects he had.

Another in 2007, Taiwan (Embassy of ROC) gave funds for treatment of asthma, HIV/AIDS and diabetes. This was a grant estimated to be used between 2007 and 2011. However, the President diverted the funds, which amounted to $8.3 Million.

In 2011, the former President and his associates stole a public grant from the Kingdom of Qatar in toal €3,999,893, which his now liable for.

In 2012, the former President and his associates opened up an National Security Project Account, which got direct funds from Gambia National Petroleum Company. Where the Ex-President diverted the funds to various projects at the time. This amounted to $1,056,841.77, which he is liable for.

In 2015, the President set up a scheme with the Minister of Petroleum and the withdraw funds from a petroleum account. Which was illegal and therefore them both a liable to the funds of $3,768,448.

Another theft was the Vision 2016 Account, where the source of funds was through the MGI Telecom AG and the International Telecommunications Gateway. Where the President and associates illegal open an account and is now liable for $18,016,434.80.

Total funds which the ex-president is liable for is $84,156,492.64, €4,609,893 and GMD516,925,313.17.

Just think about it, he did to a poor state, with bad service and lack of proper institutions. He was eating of the plate of everyone and taking bribes, taking direct state funds and spending fortunes of the gains done by state owned enterprises. This was all done with the help of ministers and their closest associates, who also got a cut. This was a Grand Heist and Jammeh enjoyed the lavish life on the expense of The Gambia. When I look through more tomorrow. The signs of how he operates will appear. This is just second piece, which really shows a lot already. Peace.

A brief expo of Yayah Jammeh’s land grab during his Presidency

The White Paper of the Janneh Report in Gambia on illegal and illicit activities of the former President Yayah Jammeh is now out. What it reveal is interesting, but not shocking evidence of corruption, misuse of funds or whatnot. That was anticipated. However, the scope of the investigation. Shows what the previous Head of State did while in office. He was busy enriching himself. What I am showing here with brief numbers and such. To give you feeling of what he did, while he was in office.

For instance, the President during his tenure in office registered through his companies, his accounts and by his associates the amount of 131 properties. Also that the he operated the amount of 89 bank accounts in his name, companies and foundations. However, the report proves that during his tenure as President he did acquire 281 properties. One of these properties was in the United States and the other was Morocco. 51 of these properties was bought of the sum of £1,150m.

Also, President Jammeh was also in possession of 29 properties, which was not bought from the state or acquired through an authority, neither bought by purchase. Meaning, he has seized 29 properties in his portfolio.

He also owned and leased several properties in the Tourism Development Area, that was approved by the local authorities, but the state nor local authorities have never received any payment for such leases. To continue with this sort of behaviour, the President also leased islands, forests, lagoons, reserves, parks, which is public land that was approved by the local authorities, but the these local authorities never received any payment for such leases.

The President also acquired community land, where he appeared to own the title of the land, as gratitudes gifts from the communities. This was a direct land grab and misuse of authority from the President to do.

The President was in the process of acquiring 30 more properties. This was land either surveyed for the President himself or his company the Kanilai Family Farm Limited (KFF).

This here is briefly and part of what the President and his closest associates did during his time in the Presidency. But it shows a pattern and also to an extent how he used his power. That he would amass all this land and acquire it, even without proper procedure and such. Therefore, grabbing land on the intent of commercial gains, agricultural output or pure greed.

This is just a beginning into the megalomania of Jammeh. Peace.

Chinese Investments in Africa: It is not a free-lunch, the tab has to be paid!

African leaders should not turn the continent into a giant collector of donations and loans from wealthy nations—they must find other plausible means to help established their economic security so as to minimize poverty. This incoherent blunder on the mainland must be scrutinized.”Duop Chak Wuol

As The 2018 Beijing Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) is scheduled to happen on the 2nd and 3rd December 2018, there is time to remember how the Chinese is operating on the African Continent. The Chinese isn’t coming with empty giving hands of donations or even charity. They come with intent of interests and needs of resources from the continent, by offering loans, serving and building through state owned enterprises (SOE) in various of countries, whether it is roads, ports or railroads are built by Chinese Companies, by Chinese Workers and often on Chinese loans. Therefore, they might end up as Chinese owned enterprises, whose vital for transportation and export of needed minerals and whatnot from the continent.

Instead of coming with loans and direct-aid with strings like Western Powers has done over the last few decades, the Chinese are coming with friendly loans, but the Heads of State should know that the Chinese doesn’t play. They want value for money and expect a return, if it doesn’t they might snatch the new crown-jewel or anticipate to get perks from the state. If that is some sort of trade-off or licenses to extract mineral resources or even minor taxation like toll-roads, where the piece of cash will be sent to Beijing and not the capitol of the country where the road is built. That is how these people operate. They are not in it to play or be giving, but gain advantage and have the upper-hand.

This can be shown by what the State Media in China writes in Xinhua Net wrote today and what a CARI report on the same funds are saying. The Chinese portray the funding as investments on the Continent, as the funds are most likely pushed as loans, which burdens the states and that they have to repay. Loans are not given, but issued because of lack of direct funds to build those infrastructure and investments done. So, what I am saying isn’t mere speculation, but a narrative that has to sink in.

Chinese Investments:

China’s investments into Africa surged by more than 100 times from 2000 to 2017. In the past three years, annual Chinese direct investment into Africa was about 3 billion dollars on average. By the end of 2017, China’s investments of all kinds into Africa totaled 100 billion dollars, covering almost every country on the continent” (Li Xia – ‘Facts & Figures: China-Africa ties: cooperation for shared future’ 02.09.2018 link: http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2018-09/02/c_137438845.htm).

Chinese Loans:

From 2000 to 2017, the Chinese government, banks and contractors extended US $136 billion in loans to African governments and their state-owned enterprises (SOEs). Angola is the top recipient of Chinese loans, with $42.2 billion disbursed over 17 years. Chinese loan finance is varied. Some government loans qualify as “official development aid.” But other Chinese loans are export credits, suppliers’ credits, or commercial, not concessional in nature. China is not Africa’s largest “donor”” (China Africa Research Initiative – ‘DATA: CHINESE LOANS TO AFRICA’ Version 1.1 August 2018).

They might try to conceal the reality, just like make-up is used on the face to fade the age or even marks that shows stress or pimples. However, the Chinese cannot be able to lie about their intent. They would not offer these sums of cash, without expecting a turnover or even profits. The Chinese wouldn’t allow all these billions of US Dollars spent on these nations to be spoiled and lost on the streets of Lome, Harare, Addis Ababa or Nairobi. They anticipate a return on the loans, either straight cash or getting pieces of the built infrastructure to advance the value of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

That the Heads of State in Africa should be concerned as they are getting in debt traps, instead of being in cycle of positive growth, they are getting new loans to pay the old ones. They are using the same creditor to secure new loans on top of the old-debt. That is how it will continue, until a point where they cannot pay the defaulted debt and the Chinese would then come to snatch something of value to recoup the failing debt. Because they don’t want to write-off the big money without having anything in return. That is what the Chinese has done in Sri Lanka and might start elsewhere. There might be soon more control of port in Djibouti or railroad of Kenya, even the Ethiopia-Djibouti railway line too. As they want their value of money.

They might be all smiles and photo-ops in Beijing these days, the smiles and added loans to dozens of countries. The added “investments” and deals struck, but the Chinese will not do so without getting something in return. To think otherwise, is to be naive and think they don’t have an agenda by doing it.

There is nothing like a free-lunch and the people will learn that, the Heads of State will not directly pay the debt, but the states will do so. Maybe not in this decade or next 5 years, but sooner or later. The bill for the coffee and biscuit will come. Than it is all eaten, but tab still has to be cleared. Peace.

The Commonwealth is made for the UK’s own Interests: One proof, Johnson’s well-wished for Trade Declaration!

The basic confrontation which seemed to be colonialism versus anti-colonialism, indeed capitalism versus socialism, is already losing its importance. What matters today, the issue which blocks the horizon, is the need for a redistribution of wealth. Humanity will have to address this question, no matter how devastating the consequences may be.”Frantz Fanon

The true value and who runs it is proven when the former head of the Commonwealth for decades has been Queen Elisabeth II, which of yesterday put the mantle of leadership to her son Prince Charles of Wales. The Statement from ‘ Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting 2018 – Leaders’ Statement’ said: “We recognise the role of The Queen in championing the Commonwealth and its peoples. The next Head of the Commonwealth shall​ be His Royal Highness Prince Charles, The Prince of Wales” (Commonwealth, 20.04.2018).

We can also know the perspective the Great Britain has for the organization, as Boris Johnson wrote so clearly in March 2018: “The good news is that when we leave the EU, we will regain the power to sign free trade agreements with our Commonwealth friends, allowing the UK to make the most of thriving markets. Brexit will give us the ability to open a new era of friendship with countries across the world. A key theme of the London summit will be how to boost trade within the Commonwealth. We’ll also discuss how to improve security co-operation and take joint action to protect the world’s oceans, bearing in mind that the Commonwealth includes island states in the Pacific, the Indian Ocean and the Caribbean” (Boris Johnson – ‘Commonwealth has key role to play in the bright future for Britain: article by Boris Johnson’ 12.03.2018, Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO)).

It shows that the United Kingdom own problems and issues is key for the Summit. The others are more a circus that the old empire can play into it. That happen and the Commonwealth Declaration on the 20th April 2018 named ‘Declaration on the Commonwealth Connectivity Agenda for Trade and Investment’ part of it says: “We, the Heads of Government representing member countries of the Commonwealth and one third of the world’s population recognise international trade and investment

as an engine for generating inclusive and participative economic growth and a means to deliver the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development” (…) “In particular, we recognise the importance of the multilateral trading system in ensuring the integration of small, vulnerable and least developed countries and countries in sub-Saharan Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific into the world economy, and welcome initiatives which will support greater and more effective participation of these countries in international trade” (…) “To promote the realisation of these goals, we hereby launch the Commonwealth Connectivity Agenda for Trade and Investment. This Agenda will be guided by the principles that: co-operation should be pragmatic and practical, leading to credible results; take into account regional integration initiatives; take into account the needs of small and vulnerable economies and least developed countries; avoid duplication with initiatives where other organisations are already working; add value in areas of engagement; and adopt a progressive approach towards a long term vision for closer trade and investment ties. It should also recognise the vital role of the private sector in delivering the 2030 Agenda and facilitating the promotion of the blue and green economy” (Commonwealth – ‘Declaration on the Commonwealth Connectivity Agenda for Trade and Investment’ 20.04.2018).

We can see that Boris Johnson’s goals for the Commonwealth Head of Government Meeting (CHOGM) appeared on the last day, yesterday, as this declaration is to anticipate the Commonwealth secretariat and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) will work on this now. To make sure the former Colonies are more connected. Not only to themselves through trade, but also to the United Kingdom. This is to give the United Kingdom bigger trade and partners through the use of the former colonies. To look at it differently, is to be naive. The other agreements is to make the public perception positive, but this here was to grease the wheels of United Kingdom, who are soon losing the trade-agreements through the membership of European Union, because of their silly decision to leave the Union.

We can see that the Commonwealth all benefits the United Kingdom and the others just has a place multi-nationally to be represented, though a loose organization, that isn’t to formal. But is a place to make them look better and get exposure through the perspective of their former colonial master. That is why they still has the inter-connected ministry FCO. It is a reason why even Zimbabwean Non-Governmental Organization was petitions the Department for International Development (DFID), so the former colony could have funds to hold Presidential Candidate National Television Debate before the General Election later in the year.

Well, that was a sidetrack, but very fitting. Because, the Commonwealth, still seems like a UK based organization, where it is all because of the mercy of the UK. The Commonwealth communiques, declarations and the meetings is because of UK leaders. Not because of the Kenyan President wanted it or the Indian one wanted some. We know there are someone even questioning it, the Bangladesh PM has been stating this today:

LONDON, April 21, 2018 (BSS)- Seeking inclusion of representative from Asia in the High Level Group to review the Commonwealth Secretariat’s Governance, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday suggested making the Group more representative with inclusion of member states of different regions. “We value the knowledge and expertise of the Secretariat for furthering work of the Commonwealth. However, we believe that views of the member states through appropriate representation, is equally important,” she said” (Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha – ‘PM suggests making CW high-level group more representative’ 21.04.2018).

This is what I started it, and it is made like this because the Commonwealth are made for the needs of United Kingdom, then the second interests. That is why the head of the Commonwealth has to be the Royalty of the UK. Now it is the Prince of Wales, which was nudged in by the Queen. The same happen to Prince Harry, who was appointed by the Queen to become the Commonwealth Youth Ambassador. We can see that the Commonwealth is a UK enterprise. The view can be seen that way, the way the Royal family has key roles and that the FCO is involved. Therefore, the meetings and statements coming from Boris Johnson with everyone he could. Making photo-ups with anyone he could during the CHOGM.

We will clearly see the Commonwealth Secretariat work on the Declaration, especially now that the UK is gearing up for the Brexit and leaving the Union. They need new secure trading partners and what better, than using the informal body of Commonwealth to get trade with. That is what even Johnson has been writing and proves his ideas. That is why he has been so diplomatic and kind with words. Because some of the nations and state leaders he has meet these days, he has written in the past ill-words of their republics and their kind. Therefore, we know he has sudden swift change of interests. That interests being the benefit of London and not of the former colonies.

The Commonwealth seems more like a savior and needed trade-partners right now, because of the problems coming with the loss of the EU membership. FCO and Commonwealth member-states with this declaration are opening for negotiations. Something that Johnson has been hoping for all along. Since he wanted that and hoped that CHOGM would deliver. However, it did that in some respect with the Declaration.

Seemingly again the Commonwealth is made for the benefit of the UK and their needed gains. If it was otherwise, than the Bangladesh PM wouldn’t asked for what she did after the CHOGM. That proves the problems within the Commonwealth Secretariat and with the Declaration itself. Since in that one in question isn’t mentioned even directly in the declaration.

Hope I am wrong, but as long the British Royalty is running it and is the heads of it. Their interests will be in line of London, not being for all the members of the Commonwealth. To think otherwise to be naive. Peace.

Did you know? That President Adama Barrow of The Gambia pardoned Yahya Jammeh!

There are some men of Nobel character out there, but they are usually hidden and in silence. Today, I will have to write of one of them. This has actually happen back-in-January of 2017, but only gotten a whiff of it this week.

The world knows of the democratically elected opposition leader and Presidential Candidate Adama Barrow of the Republic of The Gambia. That in the midst of January 2017 he was sworn-in on the 19th January, as President Yayha Jammeh fled to Equatorial Guinea. It didn’t look like he would leave, but international pressure and also resignation of his own cabinet members forced this. That ECOWAS sending forces from Senegal into Gambia, also gave the former President no-hope of a longevity of his presidency. Jammeh had a dictatorship for 22 years, even killed his opposition and harassed them.

But this is all well-known facts about the state of affairs in Gambia. That the one winning election and the who had to sworn-in in Senegal and needed Ecowas troops to get rid of the 1994 Coup d’etat General Jammeh who never wanted to leave his post. Even if someone else won over him with a coalition victory years after.

Now today after months in-charge and the dictator disposed. The act that the new president did, shows his character and his real quest to power. It shows that he can actually prove his manhood and bravery. Adama Barrow should never be underestimated. Because he came to Gambia after fleeing on the 26th January after swearing-in on 19th January 2017 in Dakar, Senegal.

So what was so noble and great happen on 30th January 2017, when Gambia Gazette No. 4. on 31st January says this:

Whereas by Section82(1)(a) of the 1997 of the Republic of The Gambia, the President may exercise his Prerogative of Mercy in respect of any person convicted of any offence” (…) “And Whereas His Excellency the President considers the circumstances of the convicted prisoners named in the schedule, as warranting the exercise of his Prerogative of Mercy” (…) “Now Therefore, I Adama Barrow, the President of the Republic of The Gambia, in exercise of the powers conferred on me by section of 82(1)(a) of the Constitution of the Republic of The Gambia, do hereby grant pardon to the persons named in the schedule hereto” (…) “Done at Banjul this 30th Day of January 2017” (Gambia Gazzette No. 4, 31.01.2017).

This here proves that someone was pardoned by the newly elected President, just days after he was returned and sworn-in. Just starting his rule and his first term in power. The peacefully elected President decided to pardon 39 people. Of these 39 people, one person is a standout, one person who has looted the Republic and been a torn in the flesh of the people. The one they couldn’t stand or be the head of state anymore. The 25th Person who was pardoned by Barrow, was no other than Yahya Jammeh!

Barrow who has nothing to win by doing this, who has nothing to gain, still gave way for Jammeh and even as he is in exile in Equatorial Guinea with his wealth. He still hasn’t have to fear the law or repercussions from law-officials and law-officers of Gambia. Since he is pardoned. He is a free and rich man in exile, that is the gift Barrow gave him, just days in power and as Commander-in-Chief. Barrow had no need to do this. He could have prosecuted him and tried every single way of freezing the accounts and get the tax-funds looted back to Gambia. Instead he pardoned him and let him go. So that Jammeh should have less grievances against the now ruler of Gambia. There shouldn’t be anything personal or anything that creates friction between them.

The one in exile should kiss his pinky-ring. He should watch over his estate and his wealth in joy. The people of Gambia should know what sort of man they have elected. There we’re no need to act this swift and give this pardon. But he did for his reasons. Clearly, the wise man forgives, but never forget. Barrow seems smart, but hopefully will not be conned. He was saved by ECOWAS and the International Pressure on Jammeh. Now he has showed his character and it deserves praise. Not because Jammeh deserved it. He didn’t he should been behind bars and paid-in-full. But Barrow gives way and shows hope of a better future. Since the leadership of this way. Gives hope for a tomorrow. Peace.

Documents:

President Macron neo-colonial perspective on Africa came to the surface at the G-20!

The supposed centrist and progressive French President Emmanuel Macron, he newly elected President who we’re to be a fresh air. Aren’t apparently so, not if he believes what he said this week during the G-20 Summit in Hamburg. It is a disgrace of a modern European President to reflect this sort of sentiment. Especially, since this wasn’t said by some rascals associated with Marine Le Pen or Geert Wilders, but actually out of Macrons own mouth. It is time to erase the saint-hood and the prestigious placing among the hopeful leaders. Because when he says these words, it hurts, and it proves that the French still feels superior towards the African Nations and their people. Macron clearly feels so when explaining himself and addressing development on the continent. The words in italic are proving his sentiments. Just take a look at a badly translated Press Conference on the 8th July 2017!

I do not share that kind of reasoning. There were several envelopes that were given. Either we change the target with the addition of billions. We have been deciding to help Africa for decades and we did. If it were that simple, you would have noticed it. The Marshall Plan is a plan for material reconstruction, in countries that had their equilibrium and stability. The challenge of Africa, it is totally different, much deeper and civilization today. What are the problems in Africa? “He asked” (…) “It is through rigorous governance, fighting corruption, a struggle for good governance, successful demographic transition. In countries that still have 7 childbirths per woman, you can spend billions of euros, you do not stabilize anything. The plan of this transformation that we must conduct together must take into account the African specificities by and with African Heads of State. It is a plan that must take into account our own commitments on all the projects I have just mentioned, better associate public and private; And it must sometimes be more regional and even national. That is the method that has been adopted and that is what we do wherever we are engaged. I will have the opportunity next week to come back in much more detail” (Macron, 08.07.2017).

It seems like he knows and understands the African experience, that he can precisely blame the mothers of Africa for the bad demographics. That he can say the failed planned parenthood is the problem. Because, the French has no interfering in the African affairs with their armies, with their control through their Central Bank and Central African Franc (CFA), and also their ideals of a Francafrique. Dr. Lansine Kaba said these words a few years ago and they still ring in my ear!

Francafrique involves a complex web of relations that have made France a major player in the affairs of many African countries and even of the African Union. Through the networks of this largely “opaque conglomerate”, France, a founding member of the UN Security Council and the World Bank, can boast a significant global influence that extends far beyond the French-speaking states. The term Francafrique suggests several facts and ideas, ranging from the politics of cordial exchange and cooperation to that of covert actions and violent military intervention that the French have been known for perpetrating in different parts of Africa since the 1960s” (…) “It involves an effective style of diplomacy that is not necessarily staffed with well-seasoned accredited diplomats, but energetic and daring doers. Francafrique builds relations that rely on close personal connections woven between the French leadership (the president and his close aides) and individual African leaders who depended on French assistance and security forces. Francafrique excelled in channelling funds to electoral campaigns of some prominent French politicians too” (Al Jazeera, 2013).

Than you have the WikiLeaks cable leaked from 2009, that even speaks volume of the way Macron views Africa as well: “Gompertz admitted that France’s Africa policy does have problems, most notably, that France continues to focus most of its efforts on its former colonies, even though they are not necessarily the most strategically important. Gompertz hopes to push for a stronger engagement with Anglophone and Lusaphone Africa. (Note: GOF officials frequently cite Nigeria, Angola, and South Africa as three of France’s key emerging partners in Africa. Gompertz was departing the same afternoon for Morocco and South Africa. End note.) Similarly, too much of France’s political and cooperation resources in Africa are designed to reinforce its partnerships within the international “Francophonie” organization. Gompertz cited the example of Burundi, where English is replacing French as the most popular foreign language, but he said this is understandable given Burundi’s important trade links in the East African Community. At the same time, he related that while he was Ambassador to Ethiopia, there was a strong demand for French language teachers, but France was not responsive in helping meet this need” (WikiLeaks, 2009).

So when Macron claims the missing envelopes and development, for various reasons, that he can understand. Even his own former Ambassador to Ethiopia Stephane Gompertz saying the projects was more for political gain and French own interest in Africa. Therefore, that the French President says what he says about the envelopes are bit disgusting. Knowingly the only intent the French has in Africa, isn’t directly developing the continent, but to extend their power there. Than he later claims the demographic and planned parenthood issues is behind it all. When the French interference and misuse of funds to keep their friendly leaders at bay. Clearly, are the program the French run under their Francafrique project.

So, when a French President should know what the French has known. That the French can spend billions and envelopes a not see development. When the interests are more of Paris, than of Dakar or Bamako, even the shores of Tunis. Usually if the Fancafrique are more for the gain of its own than the ones in need. More for the Paris elite or the friendly leaders instead of development. Therefore, it is an own created monster of French influenced based on patronage and clientele served from Paris. Macron must know this as the Ivorian and other leaders have nice houses on the boulevards of Paris. These are made of the patronage created by the French.

It is therefore, disgusting, that he blames the African woman and their parenthood for the lacking development. When lots of French own influence on the continent is for personal gain and for patronage. Not for development itself. To overlook this, is to forget the French acts and also superior belief in themselves. That is why Macron said what he said. The belief and understanding of grand strength. That they are one of the greatest civilizations on planet earth.

President Macron words: “In countries that still have 7 childbirths per woman, you can spend billions of euros, you do not stabilize anything”. Macron need some sense and need to step-up from his Le Pen ways. He need to fix his mind and should rethink French strategy on African soil, before talking about stabilization. Parts of the problems still on the continent is the problems left behind from the French. That they have never left wealth, but left behind petty dictators who spends fortune on Champs Elysee! Peace.

Reference:

Al Jazeera – ‘Q&A: France’s connections in Africa’ (15.08.2013) link: http://www.aljazeera.com/programmes/specialseries/2013/08/201381584025929212.html

WikiLeaks – ‘”FRANCAFRIQUE” — MFA DISPUTES REPORTS ON A RETURN TO BUSINESS AS USUAL’ (19.11.2009) link: https://wikileaks.org/plusd/cables/09PARIS1534_a.html

Opinion: ICJ supports the renewed notification from RSA gov. to stay within the ICC!

Certainly, there have been blowing a wind of dismay towards the International Criminal Court; the reasons are not subtle, but understandable by the men and woman fearing for their future. The ICC has for some reasons been finding lots of criminal activity and leaders misusing their powers to create crimes against humanity on the African continent. While the same ICC has not used their powers and laws on certain other questionable wars and legality behind the support of internal wars elsewhere. Therefore, the totalitarian and the lingering presidents that fear their respect and legacy, as they could be taken to court for their acts while being Presidents!

Well, here is a key piece of knowledge from the briefing written by the International Commission of Jurist (ICJ) that was dropped this March, in the same amount of days that the Republic of South Africa has released their Withdrawal of the Withdrawal from the ICC and the Rome Statute. Therefore, the ICC can be rest assured that the South African republic will not leave now.

ICJ Reasoning for problems with ICC:

While there are no doubt many serious situations that have so far escaped the Prosecutor’s purview, it is important to note that because the ICC functions within the jurisdictional limits of the Rome Statute, it cannot assume jurisdiction and commence investigations in respect of States that are not parties to the Rome Statute or nationals of such States. As noted above, in such situations, it is up to the Security Council, to decide whether to refer a situation to the Prosecutor, who will then decide whether to prosecute. The powers of the Security Council, including those concerning the use of the veto when referring situations to the ICC for investigation, also require reconsideration and reform. Efforts toward reconsideration and reform could be led by South Africa and other African States” (…) “The ICJ notes that most African States that are parties to the Rome Statute appear to remain committed to the Court. It is significant that the newly installed President of Gambia has decided to withdraw the notice of withdrawal that was issued by his predecessor” (ICJ, P: 8-9, 2017).

Recommendation of the ICJ:

“Honourable Parliamentarians should ensure that:

  1. The Implementation of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court Act Repeal Bill [B23-2016] should not be passed;
  2. South Africa should remain a party to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.
  3. South Africa should engage, where appropriate with other African States, in actively pursuing appropriate reforms within the Assembly of State Parties, with a view to making the ICC more effective in advancing the objectives of international justice.
  4. South Africa should actively encourage other African states to put in place legislation required to empower domestic courts with the ability to try genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity.
  5. South Africa should continue to work constructively with civil society on the advancement of international criminal justice” (ICJ, P: 10, 2017).

Still it is good to see the ICJ support the Republic of South Africa will to stay within the Rome Statute and the ICC. Even as they did have questions towards the African leaders and States, as the ICC has not acted towards the United States or United Kingdom for their ill-will wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

So the good news is that the Republic of South Africa still is a member of the ICC, but there is a will to leave there. That will not dwindle away, as the staunch controversy towards the ICC does not go away with a briefing like this or the ways the image of ICC is seen on the continent. That does not leave with the Gambian and South Africa now returning, or not leaving at all. This shows the problems that the leadership has with the court and their legal battles on the continent. That will not be diffused, even as this is good news for those who want to believe in International justice.

Still, there are enough issues that the ICC has to work-on and show less bias in the pursuit of criminal offenders to give the people on the continent faith in their judgement. Peace.

Reference:

International Commission Jurist (ICJ) – ‘South Africa should not withdraw from the International Criminal Court’ (March 2017)

Joint Declaration by the Economic Community of West African States, the African Union and the United Nations on the Political Situation of the Islamic Republic of The Gambia (23.01.2017)

jammeh-21-01-2017

ECOWAS, the AU and the UN commend the goodwill and statesmanship of His Excellency former President Jammeh, who with the greater interest of the Gambian people in mind, and in order to preserve the peace, stability and security of The Gambia and maintain its sovereignty, territorial integrity and the dignity of the Gambian people, has decided to facilitate an immediate peaceful and orderly transition process.

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, January 23, 2017 –

1.    Following the Decision of the Summit of the ECOWAS Authority taken on 17th December 2016 in Abuja, Nigeria, Mediation efforts, including visits to Banjul, were undertaken by the Chair of the Authority of ECOWAS Heads of State and Government, HE President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, the Mediator, HE  President Muhammadu Buhari and Co-Mediator on The Gambia, HE former President John Dramani Mahama, along with HE President Ernest Bai Koroma to mediate on the political impasse with Sheikh Professor Alhaji Dr. Yahya A. J. J. Jammeh.

2.    Following further mediation efforts by HE President Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz of the Islamic Republic of Mauritania and HE President Alpha Conde of the Republic of Guinea Conakry with HE Sheikh Professor Alhaji Dr. Yahya A. J. J. Jammeh, the former President of the Republic of The Gambia, and in consultation with the Chairperson of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government, the Chairperson of the African Union and the Secretary-General of the United Nations, this declaration is made with the purpose of reaching a peaceful resolution to  the political situation in The Gambia.

3.    ECOWAS, the AU and the UN commend the goodwill and statesmanship of His Excellency former President Jammeh, who with the greater interest of the Gambian people in mind, and in order to preserve the peace, stability and security of The Gambia and maintain its sovereignty, territorial integrity and the dignity of the Gambian people, has decided to facilitate an immediate peaceful and orderly transition process and transfer of power to President Adama Barrow in accordance with the Gambian constitution.

4.    In furtherance of this, ECOWAS, the AU and the UN commit to work with the Government of The Gambia to ensure that it assures and ensures the dignity, respect, security and rights of HE former President Jammeh, as a citizen, a party leader and a former Head of State as provided for and guaranteed by the 1997 Gambian Constitution and other Laws of The Gambia.

5.    Further, ECOWAS, the AU and the UN commit to work with the Government of The Gambia to ensure that it fully guarantees, assures and ensures the dignity, security, safety and rights of former President Jammeh’s immediate family, cabinet members, government officials, Security Officials and party supporters and loyalists.

6.    ECOWAS, the AU and the UN commit to work with the Government of The Gambia to ensure that no legislative measures are taken by it that would be inconsistent with the previous two paragraphs.

7.    ECOWAS, the AU and the UN urge the Government of The Gambia to take all necessary measures to assure and ensure that there is no intimidation, harassment and/or witch-hunting of former regime members and supporters, in conformity with the Constitution and other laws of The Gambia.

8.    ECOWAS, the AU and the UN commit to work with the Government of The Gambia to prevent the seizure of assets and properties lawfully belonging to former President Jammeh or his family and those of his Cabinet members, government officials and Party supporters, as guaranteed under the Constitution and other Laws of The Gambia.

9.    In order to avoid any recriminations, ECOWAS, the AU and the UN commit to work with the Government of The Gambia on national reconciliation to cement social, cultural and national cohesion.

10.    ECOWAS, the AU and the UN underscore strongly the important role of the Gambian Defence and Security Forces in the maintenance of peace and stability of The Gambia and commit to work with the Government of The Gambia to ensure that it takes all appropriate measures to support the maintenance of the integrity of the [Defence and] Security Forces and guard against all measures that can create division and a breakdown of order.

11.    ECOWAS, the AU and the UN will work to ensure that host countries that offer “African hospitality” to former President Jammeh and his family do not become undue targets of harassment, intimidation and all other pressures and sanctions.

12.    In order to assist a peaceful and orderly transition and transfer of power and the establishment of a new government, HE former President Jammeh will temporarily leave The Gambia on 21 January 2017, without any prejudice to his rights as a citizen, a former President and a Political Party Leader.

13.    ECOWAS, the AU and the UN will work with the Government of The Gambia to ensure that former President Jammeh is at liberty to return to The Gambia at any time of his choosing in accordance with international human rights law and his rights as a citizen of the Gambia and a former head of state.

14.    Pursuant to this declaration, ECOWAS will halt any military operations in The Gambia and will continue to pursue peaceful and political resolution of the crisis.

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