Gambia’s President Yahya Jammeh says he will sack gay and lesbian army officers serving the country’s military. The President who was addressing the newly promoted army chiefs, said lesbianism is a “ taboo” in the army, and therefore warned soldiers to desist from such practices, which he describes as “evil” and ungodly. “We will not encourage lesbianism and homosexuality in the military. It is a taboo in our armed forces. I will sack any soldier suspected of being a gay, or lesbian in The Gambia. We need no gays in our armed forces,” Jammeh said.
The Gambian leader, who recently threatens to behead gays in the West African country, said soldiers whose sexual orientation is gay should contemplate leaving the army, as his Government have zero tolerance for gays. The President advised the army chiefs to monitor the activities of their men, and deal with soldiers bent on practicing lesbianism in the military. Indiscipline in the army, said Jammeh, is a “no, no, no” and therefore warned soldiers to jealously safeguard the nation’s much cherished cultural, and traditional values. The Gambian leader believes that the military should be a no go area for gays.
The Gambia is predominantly a Muslim country, with Muslims accounting for 90 percent of the population. Islam shunned lesbianism in all its form. The President wants the newly hired army chiefs to weed out suspected gays in the army. Although, there is no evidence of lesbianism being practiced in the country’s military. The President said he wants a Professional army free of gays, and saboteurs. Mr. Jammeh also spoke about the need to discourage tribalism in the military.
In the United States, the Obama administration creates a conducive environment for military gays. Soldiers are not required to disclose, or discuss their sexual orientation. In other words, being a gay does not disqualify one to join the US military. President Jammeh’s recent outburst against suspected gays in the army is attracting a lot of attention here. Many believe that the President is out to provoke gay organizations, with the view of settling old scores with them.
Jammeh has in the recent past threatened to kill gays in the country. Some European tourists were rounded up by the police and charged with luring Gambian beach boys-known here as “ Bumsters” into gay activities. A top official at the President office said he suspects that the Head of state has gone insane. The official said Jammeh is suffering from down syndrome-a mental deficiency, which often leads to madness.
“ It is unfortunate that he is making such an irresponsible statement. This guy has gone nuts. He does not remember some of the things he said. I am sure his statement on gays will offend the gay community. He wants to comment on issues he doesn’t have any clue about. This is the type of President we have in The Gambia. He even threatened to fire female soldiers suspected of skin bleaching,”said the state house insider.
Mr. Jammeh said he wants the country’s military to be the best in the region. He says this cannot be achieved in the absence of discipline, and moral values.