By Aja Musu Bah Daffeh
More than 3,000 Gambians are currently living in the border town of Karang as refugees. This was revealed to Foroyaa on Wednesday 18 January, 2017 by Ebrima Jaiteh the President of Senegalese Red Cross of the local committee in Karang and Alieu Babou an Alkalo who also doubles as the regulatory person of the Gambian refugees.
These Gambian refugees fled from The Gambia following the political impasse leading to fear of the unknown.
The Red –Cross team based at the Centre Socio Educatif De Karang Poste said the Senegalese Government and United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) assigned them to take good care of Gambians who ran for their lives due to the current political situation, adding that some are lodged in Kerr Samba Gueye and Toubakuta camps in the surrounding vicinity, besides the big camp in Sokone and all these are done in order to secure the lives of our beloved Gambians.
They said that some compound owners in Karang have whole-heatedly and willingly left their houses for Gambians to stay there till after the political impasse, noting that if not for those compounds, the camps would have been overcrowded. They added that no Gambian in Karang is homeless and promised to give all of them a place to lay their heads and feel safe.
Alagie Kah a native of Lamin CDC and a refugee in Karang stated that Yahya Jammeh is the root to their problems, pointing out that though he claims to love Gambians he despises them. He said he took his family to Casamance for their lives to be safe before fleeing to Karang.
He noted that the time he was coming to Karang, he broke in tear because Gambians are now called refugees and the peaceful culture of The Gambia is being taken away by outgoing president Yahya Jammeh. “Since the political crisis started, jobs have become scarcer and the people have become desperate and terrified,” he said.
He asserted that “the people of Karang are really humble and have respect for humanity and they promised to give us our daily meals, they provide places for all Gambians who have fled and I’m praying for the peaceful moments to return because Gambia is known to be a peaceful and civilised place.”
Ebou Joof, a Senegalese businessman who lives in The Gambia for many years doing business noted that business is dull and he has suffered a big loss to him. He said his customers are not buying because of fear that there will be war in the country.
“Every businessman wishes to make high profit but if this does not work I have to come back to my native land till after the political impasse.”