The President of ECOWAS Commission, Marcel de Souza revealed this in Abuja yesterday, while briefing journalists and members of the diplomatic corps on the political situation in that country.
De Souza said this followed a request by President Adama Barrow that the ECOWAS force remain in the country for the next six months.
“By the end of the week, the forces will fall back. Barrow would like us to have a sufficient force on ground for about six months; we will see which troops will be withdrawn and which would be retained”, he stated.
He further said that the ECOWAS Mission in The Gambia was to secure peace, contrary to reports that there was a military force in the country after former President Yayah Jammeh’s departure.
De Souza stated: “We needed to have a specific strategy and prevent a single shot being fired and avoid any bloodshed. Orders were given for forces to move to Banjul; it was a force to secure the situation, the environment and the life of Barrow, not a military move.
“What if there was an assassination attempt on President Barrow’s life, the aim of the entire action will be defeated.
We are waiting for a report, by today or tomorrow we will be able to indicate that President Barrow will return”.