An opportunity again

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

We have got to know, according to reports, that there is another high-powered delegation of the Mediation Support Team intending to visit The Gambia, to talk with the sitting president on the current political standoff lingering in the country.

It has been reported that the presidents of Nigeria, Sierra Leone and Liberia will visit Banjul on Wednesday 11 January 2017 to continue talks with the sitting president on the impasse.

This move, which will include Ghana’s former President John Mahama, along with representatives of the United Nations and African Union, is out to find a solution to the political problem hitting hard on the nation.

We are, therefore, praying that this second attempt yields fruit and pulls our nation from going down the lane of violent conflict.

There has been so much trouble in the world, such as internal strife and external aggressions, many of which have ended up destroying the growth, development, social fabric and human lives of nations.

We should not opt to go down that lane before we come to terms. Let us save our nation of that horrible and infamous history by coming to terms peacefully, and accepting the will of God.  Not by violent means.

Many people and organisations have called for a peaceful solution to the problem, which is actually the right path to follow.

For example, the Senegal-Gambia-Guinea Bissau Women’s Forum recently called on all parties to resolve the current political crisis by non-violent means.

“The Senegal-Gambia-Guinea Bissau Women’s Forum is urging all parties to exercise full restraint and give priority to dialogue and non-violence to resolve this crisis,” they said.

The women have said all should be mindful of the observance of the law, the Constitution of The Gambia and all treaties, protocols and conventions signed by The Gambia, in respect of the sacred nature of the power and will of the people.

It is interesting to note what the women are calling for. They said: “We welcome all the initiatives and efforts by ECOWAS, the AU and UN towards a peaceful resolution and solemnly call on outgoing President Jammeh, as Pan Africanist, to listen to his people and give priority to discussion, dialogue and consultation as genuine African values constantly observed by our forefathers when faced with similar choices.”

A peaceful negotiation is the best option. Let us pursue it and see it to the end.

This is another opportunity at hand – the Muhammadu Buhari Mediation Support Team efforts could bring a solution to this impasse.

Someone has said many an opportunity is lost because a man is out looking for four-leaf clovers.

“Opportunity is often difficult to recognize; we usually expect it to beckon us with beepers and billboards.”

William Arthur Ward