Gambian President Adama Barrow has reinstated 18 soldiers into the Gambian Army. Out of the number are six soldiers convicted of plotting a coup against exiled leader Yahya Jammeh in 2014, a military source told AFP on Saturday.
This decision comes days after Barrow replaced the country’s Chief of Defence Forces (CDS), Ousmane Bargie, with his predecessor, Lt. Gen. Masanneh Kinteh.
Local media reported that three other top officers, Major General Saikou Seckan, Brigadier Generals Alagie Martin and Mamat Cham were reinstated days after the President kicked out four others believed to be loyal to Jammeh.
“The military high command has in consultation with President Adama Barrow reinstated Lt Buba Sanneh, Private Modou Njie, Lt Sarjo Jarju, Captain Abdoulie Jobe, Lieutenant Amadou Sowe and Buba Bojang in the army,” the high-level source disclosed on condition of anonymity.
All six men were convicted and sentenced by a military court in April 2015. Three of them were handed death sentences. Their appeals were still pending with the country’s Supreme Court when Barrow granted them amnesty last month.
The six men have already begun work, the source added.
Jammeh survived several coup attempts in his over two decades in charge, with one of the most serious arising on December 30, 2014, when mutinous soldiers attempted to take control of the presidential palace while he was out of the country.
Jammeh is now living in exile in Equatorial Guinea after losing his fifth attempt at the presidency in December last year. He lost to the then opposition coalition candidate, little known Adama Barrow.
Jammeh accepted and later refused to recognise the result of the historic polls until the threat of west African military intervention to remove him forced him out. He only agreed to leave after mediation by Mauritanian and Guinean leaders.