Gambian refugees are not ready to go home yet despite Yahya Jammeh‘s concession to step down. They say they will only feel safe to return after the 22-year ruler leaves the country.

More than 45-thousand people have fled into neighbouring Senegal since January, fearing violence. This, after Economic Community Of West African States (ECOWAS) mobilised forces remove Jammeh by forces after expressing his intention cling to power.

Uncertainty still lingers on among Gambian refugees in Senegal.

“I have never experienced war. It has been peaceful and I have never heard even a gunshot. I was scared of how the situation was getting worse, and that’s why I decided to leave,” said one Gambian refugee.

A student refugee in Senekal is also doubtful of returning home.

“I think the moment that he leaves, people will go back to their homes, but if Jammeh stays in the country, a lot of Gambians have fear to go back to their
country,” said Hatib Njie, a student at Gambian capital of Banjul, one of the refugees in Karang.

The latest developments in the tiny West African country promise to bring to a close a reign that began in 1994 when Jammeh seized power in a coup.

Through the years, Jammeh’s government established a reputation for torturing and killing perceived opponents to stifle dissent.

This could also set a precedent in Africa, whereby a head of state has been pressured by a military threat to step down.

Adama Barrow, who won the December 1 poll by a slim margin, was sworn into office at Gambia’s embassy in Dakar on Thursday

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– By TV Bulletins