Gambia’s notoriously anti-gay president has rejected the result of the election which saw him defeated by a former Argos security guard
Gambian leader Yahya Jammeh is disputing the outcome of this month’s presidential election, having previously conceded just last week.
The notoriously homophobic politician was defeated by Adama Barrow, who won 43% of the vote.
Gambia’s electoral commission revised the result on 5 December after finding that ballots in one area had been added incorrectly. But the commission said this had “not changed the status quo” of the result.
Jammeh now claims there were “serious and unacceptable abnormalities” and has called for fresh elections in a move condemned by the US.
A spokesperson for Human Rights Watch has said they are “deeply concerned” and that the international community “should loudly protest any unlawful attempt to subvert the will of the Gambian people”.
Jammeh, who has ruled the country since coming to power through a military coup in 1994, has frequently encouraged violence against the LGBT community.
Last year he threatened to “slit the throats” of gay people in his country.
He also claimed in September that he can cure AIDS, but only on Mondays and Thursdays.
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In 2008, he was strongly criticised by EU officials after he vowed to introduce laws stricter than those in Iran, where gay acts between men are punishable by death.
President-elect Adama Barrow, who has accused Jammeh of damaging democracy by refusing to accept the result, has already gained notoriety in the UK after it transpired he previously worked as a security guard in Argos on London’s Holloway Road.
The retailer then posted a tongue-in-cheek tweet about its staff training scheme.
Good to see that our staff training continues to pay off… ???☺️ https://t.co/d0t3DcUWsJ
— Argos (@Argos_Online) December 3, 2016
The 51-year-old has never held a public office position but has vowed to revive the country’s economy.