Ecowas leaders met Jammeh to persuade him to handover power

(JollofNews) – West African political leaders are to return to The Gambia this week to press President Yahya Jammeh to abide by election results and step down, Nigeria’s foreign minister said Monday.

Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari is to visit Banjul on Wednesday with Liberian counterpart Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Ghana’s former president John Dramani Mahama, Geoffrey Onyeama said.

The meeting would “discuss with President Jammeh the imperative to respect the constitution”, the foreign minister added in a statement after talks on the crisis in Abuja.

Buhari and Mahama have been appointed mediators by the regional bloc ECOWAS in the stand-off, which was sparked by Jammeh’s loss of December 1 elections to opposition candidate Adama Barrow.

Onyeama said the talks “agreed on the determination to resolve the Gambian political crisis in a manner that at every step of the way conforms with the constitution… and respects the will of the people of The Gambia”.

Those involved in the talks were concerned with worsening security, including a crackdown on the media, which has seen a number of radio stations taken off air.

There has also been a “mass exodus” of people into the interior and neighbouring countries, Onyeama said.