Wednesday, October 4

‘Gambia signed no bilateral agreement with German gov’t on deportation’ 

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Speaking at the National Assembly, Minister Tangara said the “Ministry of Foreign Affairs is not aware” of any such agreement between the two countries. 

“The document that led to the deportation of Gambians is a document agreed upon by the Gambian government and the European Union in 2018 and that’s part of a migration program when the EU first visited The Gambia in 2018 following the change of government,” he said. 

The Minister further clarified that “it’s not an agreement, it’s an MOU” conveying their agreement with the said arrangements forwarded by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 2018 through a note verbal. 

“The only thing we can do to stop the deportation is to negotiate with them to see how best they can to regularize them,” he stated. “And that’s what’s on the table with Germany to regularize Gambians that have stayed there who have not committed any crime.” 

He said The Gambia government is duty bound by international law, when it is established that a person is a Gambian and they have all the documentary evidence, to accept Gambian deportees. 

 “We cannot refuse you to come back to the country when deported,” he said, adding: “We are aware of the fact that migration is part and parcel of human history and there is no way we can stop it and we made that very clear to our partners that in fact the families of these emigrants are not aware of their leaving. So the solution is not deportation but to work on measures that will help us deal with this efficiently.” 

Mr Tangara said that regarding “the invitation of the Spanish foreign minister, we have engaged them in seasonal migration because we are aware some people do not want to stay in Europe; they just want to make money and come back home and we are also engaging the Government of Italy in this kind of agreement because I know they have similar agreement with other countries.”