Huge crowds waved Gambian flags, applauding in excitement as the country celebrates 52 years of Independence at The Independent Stadium in Bakau.
Many say this year’s independent celebration was very special adding that they have not seen anything like it especially during the past 22 years of the Jammeh regime.
There were waves of applause to a beloved President Adama Barrow as his motorcade entered the independence stadium. He was seen standing in his vehicle surrounded by security officers while the cameramen were taking loads of photos. He raised his hand to touch his watch a symbol to show that the era of former president has ended and that The new Gambia is here.
President Barrow was escorted to the podium where the national anthem was played in his honour before walking to greet the invited heads of State and dignitaries representing their countries to the occasion.
The invited heads of state includes the president of Senegal who was a special guest, Presidents of Liberia, Mauritania, Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso, Ghana and former President of Ghana, Nigerian Vice president, Prime Minister of Guinea Bissau as well as The UN Special Envoy in West Africa amongst others.
The programme was opened with prayers from both Muslim and Christian prayers.
There were helicopters flying around the stadium. The Liberian and Senegalese presidents were given cheers and loud applause by the crowd. Lt. Colonel Babucarr Sanyang was the parade commander.
The Director General of Prisons, David Colley was booed while the first Gambian soldier to switched allegiance to president Barrow was cheered.
Meanwhile, the former Vice President of the Gambia, Isatou Njie Saidy was in attendance but booed by the crowd.