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Gambia's Jammeh 'Stole $50m', Assets Frozen: Minister

23 May 2017

"The government has obtained a court order to freeze and place temporary hold on all of Jammeh's known assets and companies directly linked to him", Justice Minister Aboubacarr Tambedou told reporters on Monday.

In total, he withdrew "189,000,000 ($4m) from funds belonging to Social Security and Housing Finance Corporation ... and at least $50,000,000 from Special Projects Fund and International Gateway Accounts at the Central Bank of The Gambia", Tambadou said.

The exiled former President of the Gambia, Mr. Yahya Jammeh, is in trouble following the seizure of his assets.

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"The application for the freeing order was necessitated by the discovery of unauthorised withdrawals of millions of Dalasis and foreign currencies by former President Yahya Jammeh from the Central Bank and other state co-operations", Mr Tambedou said.

These include 88 bank accounts, 131 properties and 14 companies linked to the former strongman.

Life of luxuryAccording to Gambia's solicitor general, Cherno Marenah, Jammeh had for years used public money to feed his lavish lifestyle, which included a fleet of expensive cares, a private jet and a mansion in the United States.

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"These are only preliminary findings at this stage and all indications are that these discoveries are just a tip of the iceberg ..."

Jammeh was defeated by President Adama Barrow in December 2016 elections and went into exile in Equatorial Guinea following a political standoff.

He is now living in exile in Equatorial Guinea with his wife and family as part of a deal brokered by regional group, Ecowas.

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Fourteen companies in the name of Jammeh or his company KGI were taken over, while livestock and cars belonging to Jammeh were also seized. Jammeh has since remained out of contact. "May I state however that this list of assets frozen is by no means exhaustive", Tambadou added.

Gambia's Jammeh 'Stole $50m', Assets Frozen: Minister