Gambia’s finance minister told the country and the world last week, that ex-president Yahya Jammeh, who fled to Equatorial Guinea in January, had left the country over a billion dollars in debt.
Income from the state telecommunications company was diverted to two accounts at the central bank, then withdrawn. Income from the ports authority was used directly by Jammeh to pay for his own expenses.
The state pension fund is known to have paid for the president’s plane, but an additional 40 million dollars is missing from the fund.
Reuters has an exclusive article on The Jammeh Foundation for Peace, ostensibly for scholarships and health needs, but from which former Jammeh aides say they transferred funds to Jammeh and his wife’s accounts and withdrew money from it at Jammeh’s request, notably before he traveled.
Officials said it will be some time before the extent of Jammeh’s theft is known. In the meantime, the World Bank has pledged 60 million dollars to the Gambian state, to help it get back on its feet.
The International Monetary Fund and African Development Bank may offer additional support.