Whoo Boy, aren’t we surprised?

Exiled Gambian ruler Yahya Jammeh stole millions of dollars in his final weeks in power, plundering the state coffers and shipping out luxury vehicles by cargo plane, a special adviser for the new president said on Sunday.

Note that looting the central bank is said to have brought him as much as $9 million. Not a lot to loot in a poor country…..

18 comments on “Whoo Boy, aren’t we surprised?

  1. Wonder how long before Adama ( his parents were Lorne Greene fans?) gets his fingers in the till?

    If there is nothing left that might slow him down a bit.

  2. Why did he loot the central bank? Why didn’t he just get it to print more money? He hasn’t been reading his Richard Murphy has he.

  3. Europeans should have done to Africa what they did to north America, marginalize the natives and build a coast to coast civilisation. It would have been a lot less trouble in the long run than letting Africans run Africa.

  4. I presume it was the foreign reserves of the central bank he looted? Or the gold, if they had any.

  5. Note that looting the central bank is said to have brought him as much as $9 million. Not a lot to loot in a poor country…..

    I am surprised. That is chicken feed. The Gambia has about 1.5 million people. At normal exchange rates they make about $435 a year giving a GDP of about $880 million. In PPP terms, it is $1600 a year for a GDP of $3.3 billion.

    If the former – and Swiss banks don’t take PPP – he took about 1% of the GDP? After being in power for 22 years? That is a paragon of restraint.

    The administration of Yahya Jammeh changed the long-form name to Islamic Republic of The Gambia in December 2015

    A British colonial official I read once said there was one thing sure about Muslim political groups in India. In the end they amounted to little because their leaders were all on the take. The wisdom of our elders we forget at our peril.

    So it is bound to be twenty times that much.

  6. Roue le Jour – that’s exactly what we did in S. Africa and it worked well enough. Unfortunately the Dutch took over with their idiotic apartheid system, which ensured racial politics and tribalism for ever, and the place is suffering.

  7. BiI: the real problem was the Afrikaners seeing the emergence of a black middle class as direct competition to their own struggle to emerge from rural poverty, hence job reservation, Bantu education. The physical separation into white Westernish economy and Bantustans,used as labour reserves, entrenched tribalism and gave capitalism a bad reputation, hence present lot of idiots. I can’t help but think that a large black middle class would have tempered the inevitable transition.
    RlJ: the colonisation of the Americas was possible because of the microscopic migrants like measles and smallpox which wiped out the indigenes.

  8. Bloke In Italy

    I don’t think that is quite right. Let me fix that for you. That’s exactly what we did in S. Africa and it worked well enough. Unfortunately the Dutch took over Britain’s racist policies but gave it their own name with the apartheid system, which ensured South Africa remains a haven of peace and prosperity for generations. Until Reagan sided with the Communists and allowed Black racial politics and tribalism for ever, and now the place is suffering.

    Africa is rich in direct proportion to the number of White people who live locally.

  9. Ljh,
    Point taken re smallpox. What I find interesting is that one tends to think there weren’t many Indians but there were lots of Africans. As far as I can see from Google, the populations were actualy very similar.

  10. RlJ: the slave trade also brought maize to Africa, this replaced less productive summer rainfall crops like sorghum, including places far from the coast and long before colonisation, so that within a century the population quadrupled.

  11. plundering the state coffers and shipping out luxury vehicles by cargo plane

    Shipping them where? The problem with half of these idiots is they know someone, somewhere, will be stupid enough to give them sanctuary. Half the time it’s the French.

  12. Ljh – “the slave trade also brought maize to Africa, this replaced less productive summer rainfall crops like sorghum”

    And cassava. Both of them are now substantial food crops.

    Tim Newman – “The problem with half of these idiots is they know someone, somewhere, will be stupid enough to give them sanctuary.”

    Equitorial Guinea seems to be the first destination. I would be careful if I were him. I guess he is too important to be abused, but in EG having your cars stolen by the President and perhaps being eaten is not unknown.

  13. Ljh, SMFS
    Thank you. I was entirely unaware of that. I shall add it to my list of things to read up on.

  14. Roué le Jour – “I shall add it to my list of things to read up on.”

    The more interesting one is bananas. They should be native to south-east Asia. Vietnam for instance. But bananas and plantains are a very large African food crop. They seem to have arrived a long time before Europeans. Even more Muslim traders on the East Coast. I think some people suggest they arrived between the 1st and 6th century AD.

    But how?

    The people of Madagascar are not ethnically African. The nearest languages related to their own are in Sumatra. So they may have brought the banana with them and hence spread it to the mainland.

  15. Trade from India to East Africa has been happening for at least two millenia timed seasonally with shifting wind patterns ie the Trade Winds, slaves and ivory in one direction, goods from india, Yemen and places further east in the other. The Arab expansion post Mo led to permanent trading posts as far south as Mozambique and provided a trade network which the Portuguese later tapped into. The Spanish traded across the Pacific from Mexico to the Phillipines from where New World ingredients could also travel westward eg chillis, pineapples, cassava, vanilla

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