Gambia: President Barrow for re-inauguration

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Thousands of people are gathering in The Gambia for the inauguration of the country’s new president, Adama Barrow, after a lengthy power struggle forced him into exile.
Various African heads of state are expected at the ceremony.

Mr Barrow is only the third president in the history of The Gambia.
He was sworn in last month in a low-key event in neighbouring Senegal before his predecessor agreed to step down.

Saturday’s much larger scale ceremony is taking place in a stadium near the Gambian capital, Banjul.

The celebrations also mark 52 years of the west African country’s independence.
Crowds queued through the night to get a good spot inside the stadium and witness national history.

Mr Barrow came to power after his predecessor reluctantly agreed to step aside
Long-time leader Yahya Jammeh was voted out in December but he only agreed to step aside when regional powers sent in troops ready to remove him by force.

He has since fled to Equatorial Guinea.

Mr Barrow has promised a new dawn for the country, which Mr Jammeh ruled with an iron fist.
Many political prisoners have already been freed and The Gambia is set to rejoin international institutions such as the International Criminal Court and the Commonwealth.

Mr Barrow, a successful property developer who has never held public office, defied the odds by winning the election.
Speaking to the BBC just before the election, Mr Barrow said that Gambians “had been suffering for 22 years” and were ready for change.
His predecessor had once told the BBC he would rule for a billion years, if necessary.

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