By Sheriff Saidykhan
The former Accountant General of The Gambia, Alieu Jobe, has told the Truth Reconcialiation, and Reparations Commission (TRRC) that he rebuked the 2006 abortive coup headed by late Colonel Ndure Cham, aimed at toppling the former government of Yahya Jammeh.
He has made these remarks at the TRRC public hearings held at Dunes hotel in Kololi.
“I didn’t support the idea for lots of reasons, no coup is ever accepted because one coup could lead to counter coup, it could generate to another level,” Alieu Jobe said.
Mr. Jobe told commissioners that the former Chief of Defence Staff CDS of The Gambia Armed Forces, Colonel Ndure Cham, said to him that the formation of the coup was to drum up international recognition, with the idea of forming a civilian government.
“What he said in that general discussion before given my reservation, and to discourage him he said they are going to form a civilian government and the objective was to get international recognition,” he remarked.
The former Accountant General said he has tabled series of discourse with late Ndure Cham, regarding the formation of the coup plot.
“Certainly there was a break in my life, this was on the 21st of March 2006. There was a rumour of a foiled coup. In 2005, I interacted with colonel Ndure Cham, we have range of discussions, from family issues and other personal issues; something strange came up in the discussion, and he mentioned to me that he is comptemplating of overthrowing the government of former president Yahya Jammeh.”
According to him, Ndure Cham, the principal architect of the coup said the reason for the staging of the coup was to correct the wrongdoings of the former government, ranging from human rights abuses, disarray in the Armed Forces, respect for the rule law and corruption in the drive towards forging ties with the international community.
“He has lots of genuine reasons, one of the things he said was the army is spoiled, and when compared to Jawara days, was more professional. This is one of the things he said he could not allow to continue. He also mentioned the issue of human rights violations, corruptions abduction to also ensure theirs stability across the sub region among others,” he told commissioners.
The former Accountant General disclosed that Ndure Cham, had proposed his candidature as the head of the civilian government, in the aftermath of unseating Jammeh’s former government, outlining his objections to the coup.
“He wanted me to head the government to be the president after the coup. I don’t I will be. One I know the history of military coup. Secondly, I know their mindset,” he asserted.
At Mile 2 Prison
The former coup convict described the conditions at Mile 2 State Central Prison as inhumane and degrading, coupled with poor foods.
“Mile 2 Prison was very difficult, because the food was very bad. I could remember telling people that the food should change, and to serve us with better food and a better living conditions. I could still remember since the day we left prison, the conditions still remains the same. If they gave us rice, leave it for some 3 hours, you cannot eat it. It’s like it is poisoned. It will start smelling with a very bad odour.”