Author: Yusef Taylor

Yusef Taylor, commonly known as Flex Dan is an editor and practising journalist based in the Gambia with a keen interest in human rights, the economy and good governance among many others. He continues to break news on the economy, human rights violations and is highly engaged in security sector reforms, constitutional reform and the transition of the Gambia from dictatorship to a democracy, the NewGambia. Yusef has been working with Gainako as a media practitioner from 2015 to date. He has a degree in Civil Engineering with 5 years of Design Consultancy experience.

By Yusef Taylor, @FlexDan_YT The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) has announced that one Candidate has died and a further three candidates have withdrawn from the 9th April 2022 Parliamentary Elections. Only last week the IEC issued a press release indicating that two Independent Candidates have withdrawn from the elections meaning that a total of five candidates have now withdrawn from the elections. To date, the total number of candidates has dropped from 251 to 246. Interestingly enough the Commission also announced that By-Elections will be conducted for four Council Wards in May 2022. Our research has shown that Councillors from…

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By Yusef Taylor, @FlexDan_YT Members of the Gambia’s Police Intervention Unit (PIU) and Gambian Security Institutions have failed to heed the TRRC Recommendations to train “security forces on crowd control (riot management), and all other relevant security and legal issues concerned with the management of violent demonstrations and riots”. This is evidenced by two statements issued by the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) condemning the PIU for heavy-handedness when dealing with public gatherings. The Gambia’s Truth, Reconciliation and Reparations Commission (TRRC) was enacted by the National Assembly to investigate the human rights violations of former President Yahya Jammeh’s regime from…

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By Yusef Taylor, @FlexDan_YT According to the latest audit report issued by the National Audit Office (NAO), thousands of Gambian Diplomatic Passports (DP) have been issued without following due process. The Auditor General’s report titled “Administration Management of Diplomatic and Service Passports” revealed that “the Gambia Immigration Department supplied 6,500 machine readable passports to the MoFA in 2014. However, officials at the Ministry were unable to account for 5,395 passports”. This means that only 1,105 passports were accounted for. Unfortunately, the President’s Office (OP) also joined into the fraudulent act and issued at least 70 DPs without supporting documents. Although…

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By Yusef Taylor, @FlexDan_YT According to a leading campaign organiser of President Adama Barrow’s National People’s Party (NPP), their candidates for the upcoming National Assembly elections will not participate in any debates just like their party leader. President Adama Barrow declined to attend the Gambia’s first-ever Presidential debate in the run-up to the 4th December 2021 Presidential Election. However, that did not stop him from winning with an absolute majority. In an exclusive interview with Mambanyick Njie of the NPP he confirmed that together with Seedy Njie, they were the main organisers for the NPP National Assembly elections campaign. It…

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By Yusef Taylor, @FlexDan_YT The European Union (EU) Ambassador to the Gambia announced that President Adama Barrow’s Government has benefitted D22 Billion in financial support during his first term. Addressing the press at Ocean Bay Hotel in Cape Point, EU Ambassador Corrado Pampaloni revealed that “over the period 2017-2021 the European Union supported The Gambia to the tune of €365 million Euro (about D22 billion Dalasi), among the highest per capita in Africa”. The Gambia’s relationship with the EU was tense due to the poor human rights record of the previous government of President Yahya Jammeh. Towards the end of…

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By Yusef Taylor, @FlexDan_YT Currently, the Gambia has only one National Assembly Member (NAM) from the Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) community. This is Nominated NAM Hon Ndey Yassin Secka, unfortunately, she will not be contesting for another term. Our reporter’s inquiry with the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) has confirmed that only one candidate from the PWDs community and 19 women will be contesting in the upcoming 9th April 2022 Parliamentary Elections. The only PWD candidate named, Mr Lamin Manneh from Sukuta granted an interview to Gainako Online News. Mr Manneh will be contesting for the Sanneh Mentereng NAM seat currently…

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By Yusef Taylor, @FlexDan_YT A report and infographic released by the National Disaster Management Agency (NDMA) and the Office of the Vice President has confirmed that attacks between Senegalese soldiers and the MFDC Separatists affected almost ten (10) thousand people in the Foni region. The Foni Incident report states that “on the 13th March, around 13:45 GMT the Senegalese launched a military operation in the southern region of Senegal (Casamance) impacting all the Gambian border communities in Foni and the nearby districts. The districts affected in Foni are Kansala, Bintang Karanai, Berefet, Jarrol and Bondali. According to the Foni Incident…

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By Yusef Taylor, @FlexDan_YT The Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation (CSVR) concluded a six-day training of trainers on Saturday 19th March 2022. CSVR is a South African based NGO, that bore out of South Africa’s transitional justice process. Psychologist and Project manager for CSVR, Ms Jacqui Chowles explained that she also worked for the Truth Reconciliation and Reparations Commission’s Victim Support Unit. Now she supports the Gambia’s Transitional Justice process by training caregivers and providing subgrants to replicate body mapping initiatives. As lead trainers Ms Chowles and Ms Mariama Jobarteh of Fantanka were responsible for training representatives…

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By Yusef Taylor, @FlexDan_YT The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) revealed that the replacement of voter’s cards commenced today, 21st March 2022 for a week and will attract an increased fee of D200. This was announced by IEC’s Returning Officer for Banjul Mr Sulayman Joof at a public dialogue on “Citizens Access to and use of Electoral Information” organised by the Gambia Press Union (GPU) at Sanyang Community Library on Saturday 19th March 2022. Other members of the high table that addressed the gathering include the Governor of the West Coast Region, the Alkalo Lamin Sanyang, GPU President Mr Muhammed MS…

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By Yusef Taylor, @FlexDan_YT A coalition of Gambian victims held a press conference rejecting the Truth Reconciliation and Reparations Commission’s (TRRC) recommendation to approve Sana Sabally’s amnesty request. Victims were outraged on Friday 18th March 2022 after a publication on Standard Newspaper revealed that former President Yahya Jammeh’s second in command was granted amnesty from prosecution for extrajudicial killings, torture and other inhumane treatment. MoJ’s Statement on Criminal Liability On 24th December 2021, the Gambia’s Ministry of Justice (MoJ) issued a statement indicating “all members of the Junta comprising” former Lieutenant Yahya Jammeh, Lieutenant Sana Sabally, four other Lieutenants and…

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