APRC PROTEST RALLY IN BANJUL What participants say

By Rohey Jadama and Mustapha Jallow
APRC party militants, civil servants and school children accompaniedVP and other senior government
by their teachers held a protest march in Banjul on Tuesday, 9th
December 2014, which is said to be in support of the Gambia government
on its stance against homosexuality.
The event, which coincided with the return of President Yaya Jammeh
from the countryside, commenced with a parade starting at the new
National Assembly building at the entrance of Banjul and culminating
at the t22nd July Square.
The participants comprising mainly school children were displaying
banners with inscriptions of “no to homosexuality” in both Arabic
and English languages.
Addressing the gathering at the square in Banjul, Mr. Saihou Sanyang,
the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Local Government, as usual in
such solidarity events, read out a statement which strongly condemns
homosexuality and supports President Jammeh and his government on
their stance on the issue. He denounced what he termed as the imposition of the Western governments conditions to accept
homosexuality in return for aid.
Apparently, this demonstration was in response to the statement issued
by the US National Security Agency read out on GRTS television and in
which the US Government criticized the human rights situation in The
Gambia such as the detentions without trial, disappearances, and the
violation of rights of the people including the homosexuals, among
others and called on the government to address the matter.
The event was attended by President Jammeh, who was standing below
among the participants, while the Vice President, Madame Isatou Njie
Saidy, and other cabinet ministers were on the pavilion.