The Gambia and President Jammeh: a hunger crisis ignored?

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President Yahya Jammeh has spent cash on musicians and footballers yet the Gambia is facing a severe food crisis

Saikou Jammeh

As President Yahya Jammeh of the Gambia announced an award of nearly 2m dalasi (£43,000) for the winners of a Qur'anic memorisation competition, nearly half the population of the country he rules face going hungry. Among them is Muhammed Baldeh, a farmer. "I have only two options," the 44-year-old says, "to sell my sheep and go to Kombo [urban Gambia] to find another job before next year's cropping season, or buy some provisions for our upkeep until we receive aid." In a country where unemployment is high the chances of securing another job are slim and, with a food crisis hitting the Gambia, Baldeh's future looks bleak.

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