As the presidential election approached in the fall of 2001, the president decided to lift the ban on political parties. Jammeh won the election, which was approved by international observers. A few months later, when his party APRC won the election overwhelmingly, however, he faced strong charges of election fraud by the opposition. The country does not yet meet international human rights standards. Journalists continue to be arrested, summary executions are carried out and restrictions on freedom of speech are made.
In May 2002, Parliament passed a mass media law that violated the Constitution of 1997. According to Countryaah, the law establishes a government where all journalists must be registered, they must disclose their sources and be fined if they write “unauthorized” articles and newspapers. can be closed if they do not follow the new legislation.
In December 2003, a scandal was rolled, they became known as “Babagate”. Baba Jobe who was a member of the APRC government party and old friend of President Jammeh was arrested, charged with money laundering and fraud. Jobe chaired the “Youth Development Project”. An activation project working in the import sector. However, the project never paid import duties to the Gambia Port Authority for the import of rice. As the project owed DKK 2 million. US $, the Port Authority demanded the amount paid in, and Jobe printed false checks.
On January 23, 2004, 5 senior employees of Danmarks Nationalbank were charged with a number of financial crimes against the state. By 2002-03, the bank had received almost DKK 9 million. Swiss Francs to be used to stabilize the Gambian Dalasi. The stabilization operation was to be completed in 2 days, but extended for 2 years. During this period, 4 companies were financed by illegal contracts, drafted by the accused, and the main shareholder of 2 of the companies was Baba Jobe.
In February, Jammeh stated in a TV speech that: “I am pleased to announce that oil has been found in the Gambia”. Acc. Jammeh had completed a complete survey of oil deposits offshore and onshore in The Gambia, and these had shown that “oil was present in large quantities”. Jammeh added that “experiments” in the oil fields would be conducted on the basis of the study shortly. The Gambia currently has no oil industry or experience in this field. Since 1999, the Australian company Fusion Oil has been the driving force in the oil exploration in Gambia. Nevertheless, a spokesman for the company stated that in 2003 it transferred its rights to the Gambia government. The government declares on its WEB site that it seeks to attract investors to oil exploration and that «the government collects and processes seismic data.
- Follow abbreviationfinder to see what is the meaning of GA in geography. It can stand for Gambia. Click this site to see other possible meanings of this acronym.
In August, another attempt was made against the British journalist, Ebrahima Sillah. His house caught fire and sustained serious injuries. In previous months, the newspaper was The Independents offices have twice been tried to set fire. Despite other attempts in recent months to attack the independent media in the country, police had not initiated any investigation into the incidents. Acc. Journalists Without Borders is a government campaign against the independent press. The Gambia Press Union (GPU) organizing the country’s independent journalists received an anonymous letter accusing the independent media of criticizing Jammeh and of being “agents of the West”. In December, journalist Deida Hydara was killed by gunshots. He was co-owner of the Point newspaper and correspondent of a foreign agency.