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Ramadan in Gambia started with a ban on music, singing and dancing

Ramadan in Gambia started with a ban on music, singing and dancing

Gambia

Gambians cannot play music, drum or sing in the month of Ramadan or they risk being arrested.

“As the Muslim community observes the holy month of Ramadan, the office of the Inspector General of Police informs the public that all the ceremonies and festivities involving singing, music and dancing are banned day and night,” a statement released by the police last week said.

The statement added that violators of the ban will be arrested and called on the people to expose those who will violate it.

People respect the ban and so far nobody has been arrested for violating it.

According to the Gambian police, the government ban is a measure respected by the people and no one has been arrested yet for violation.

“People respect the ban and so far nobody has been arrested for violating it”, Gambian police spokesperson, Lamin Njie, told AFP on Monday.

Gambian President Yahya Jammeh announced in December that his country was now an Islamic Republic “that respects the rights of citizens”, without specifying the practical consequences of the decision, but ensuring that it would have no impact on the Christian minority.

Some days later, an official directive made compulsory the wearing of headscarves for women in public services. The presidency later announced the annulment of the measure, explaining that wearing headscarves had “nothing to do with religion.”

Yahya Jammeh who has been in power since 1994 leads his country with an iron fist. His critics accuse him of taking unilateral decisions and making sensational statements on migration and homosexuality.

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