The sleepy birthplace of Yahya Jammeh is expected to come alive this weekend as the former President reportedly directed all APRC members to be thick on the ground in Kanilai to celebrate the July 22 military takeover. According to the leader of APRC-No-To-Alliance Yaya Tamba, he was given the nod by President Jammeh to inform party members about his (Jammeh) directive for all roads to lead to Kanilai this weekend to commemorate the 1994 coup.
As part of the planned activities, a fund-raising event is expected to be organized. Recitation of the Qur’an is also on the menu.
Former President Yahya Jammeh, according to two former junta members, was chosen by 2Lt. Edward Singhateh to lead a transition to democracy following the successful coup against Sir Dawda Kairaba Jawara on 22nd July 1994.
According to former junta vice chairman 2Lt.Sanna B. Sabally, Jammeh and Singhateh led a botched attempt to have Jawara arrested at the Banjul International Airport on the eve of the coup for the execution of the plan but as they threw their hands up in despair, Lt. Sabally said he telephoned to inform them that instead of the airport being used as the launchpad, focus was to shift to State House.
Lt. Sabally and Lt. Almamo Manneh(deceased) already had access to the armoury of the 1 Infantry Battalion and were ready to employ the weapons for the second phase of the operations on 22 July.
However according to Lt. Singhateh in his TRRC testimony, when they (junta members) regrouped at the Army HQ camp in Yundum, Jammeh looked so uneasy that he had to shove him into a waiting army vehicle as soldiers and officers prepared for a move on State House. Singhateh told the truth commission that the coup was leaderless until they deposed Jawara. Jammeh, however, became the junta leader and went on to dismiss the other junta members. He was later celebrated for the bloodless coup.