Jammeh biding farewell to his supporters before leaving for exile in 2017. Photo credit:AFP

Former president Yahya Jammeh will face arrest if he returns home, Justice minister Abubacarr Tambadou said on Sunday.

Jammeh has signalled his intention of wanting to return home from exile in a WhatsApp audio released last week and urged his supporters to demand his return. They took to the streets in their thousands on Thursday demanding that the former president be allowed to return home and for the government to honour an agreement in 2017 that allowed him the right of return from exile.

However the Justice minister in a speech to mark the start of the country’s Legal Year said Jammeh will be arrested and charged for alleged human rights abuses.

“After a year of hearings investigating abuses during his 22-year rule, it can no longer be ruled out that crimes against humanity have been committed in The Gambia.

“There will be accountability of the highest order for these crimes and I assure the victims that it is now only a question of when, and not if.

“Unless the Truth, Reconciliation and Reparations Commission (TRRC) ruled otherwise, if former President Yahya Jammeh, ever comes back to this country, he will face immediate arrest and charges of the most serious kind.”

Jammeh is in exile in Equatorial Guinea after being forced out by the regional bloc Ecowas following his election defeat in 2016.

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