Gambia's newly-installed President Adama Barrow has returned home to a rousing welcome, ending the political crisis in the country. After taking oath of office in Senegal, Barrow remained in the neighbouring country as former president Yahya Jammeh had refused to step down after being defeated in polls in December 2016.
Jammeh's refusal sparked a political crisis that led Barrow move to Senegal as there were signs of an imminent war in the West African nation.
However, after intervention of foreign armies, Barrow landed in capital Banjul on Thursday (26 January) as hundreds of supporters lined up on the streets to greet him.
Dressed in all-white Barrow, along with his wife and children, were welcomed by top members of the army and the coalition government.
Nigerian and Senegalese troops were present in the capital providing security to the incoming African leader, a former businessman.
"I am a happy man today. I think the bad part is finished now," Barrow was quoted as saying soon after his arrival at the airport. The 51-year-old added that he hopes to set up his government as early as possible to bring stability in the former British colony. Barrow has headed to his own house until a security sweep at the presidential house is completed.
"The arrival is long overdue. His arrival is raising my confidence in the new government," said a supporter named Ebrima Bah, who was waiting at the airport.
Just ahead of his departure from Dakar, Barrow spoke to IBTimes UKand assured that he would improve ties with other countries and unify Gambia through democratic processes. "[There was] a dictatorship for a long period, but the moment you bring a democratic president, everyone will change, because it will bring freedom for everybody, including Jammeh's loyalists. They will see the truth very soon."
Meanwhile, Jammeh – who is in exile – faces allegations of brutal human rights abuse during his 22-year-long autocratic rule.