Ecomig In The gambia Compared To The Confederal Security Forces Of The Senegambia Confederation


In 1981 a strange type of military takeover took place which was different from the classic coup d’états carried out by armed forces which were taking place on the continent. Civilians led the attack on the security apparatus and the armed forces capitulated and accepted its leadership.  What was known before is for the armed forces to take over and civilians would capitulate to the rule of the coup makers .Civilians became armed and thus leading to the expansion of the armed forces beyond what  the head of state left behind. The Senegalese forces thought that they were dealing with a small paramilitary field force only to be confronted with an armed uprising of unquantified and unknown forces. This is why the death toll was heavy   and to this day no one could actually say how many people have actually perished in the war. The Senegalese government really felt threatened in its Southern border and could not risk having in the Gambia the type of situation it had to confront in 1981.

Consequently, the whole security apparatus was dismantled and the confederal security forces controlled mainly by Senegal took over the country and the Senegalese President became the permanent President of the Confederation and could declare a state of emergency in the Gambia and control all the resources of the country during a state of alert. It is Foroyaa that took part in explaining all these facts to the Gambian people.

On the other hand, when Jammeh reneged his position many Gambians called for ECOWAS dislodge him militarily. If that happened a war to the finish would have broken out . Many soldiers and weapons would have disappeared. Deaths on all sides would have been registered. ECOMIG would have dugged in an in the aftermath of the disintegration of the security forces of the Gambia foreign forces would have replaced them until a new armed force is created out of what would be termed as loyalist forces.

Mature leaders in the Gambia facilitated a peaceful entry of ECOMIG forces and their peaceful co –existence with Gambian forces. Consequently, many now do not see their relevance. The continued presence of ECOMIG forces or their departure is a political question.  How much trust exists among the Gambian political class to guarantee a peaceful political atmosphere is want each political force is to decide. Once Gambians show that they do not need to be policed by a foreign power to keep their nation peaceful and prosperous it would be ridiculous to have foreign forces on our soil. However, one the threat of political conflict remains the presence of foreign forces are inevitable.

Today, if there is total state of ungovernability new forces that no one expects would be in control of the Gambia . Gambian should now focus on creating the political environment that would free the country from all outside intervention and make it an example to emulate.