GOOD MORNING MR PRESIDENT:Mr. President Welcome back!

Monday, October 01, 2018

Mr. President, today we stand in solidarity with the teachers in the schools who have decided to go on a sit-down strike because their demands which were negotiated some time ago are not met.

Mr. President, Who is a teacher?  A teacher is a person who helps others to acquire knowledge, competences or values. A teacher is the one who educates the president, educates the doctor, educates the journalists and educates the diplomats to name a few. It is said that “An investment in knowledge pays the best interest” then it is time that your government start investing in knowledge to yield the best interest.

We don’t support strikes but like you said they should channel everything through their department/union BUT the big question is; does the union really represent their interests? Did the union engage them for a dialogue?  Did the union keep to their words and promises to them? “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world”.

Mr. President, it’s sad to know that some schools are operating without curriculums and syllabus whilst some have different syllabus from others yet all the students sit to the same examination; WASSCE etc. and one expect them to pass.  Most schools are in very poor shapes and lacks proper learning facilities. A lot need to be done in the education system of The Gambia.

Mr. President, “Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today”. So why not go for a dialogue with teachers than threatening them. Threatening them is like adding petrol to fire so it’s better to be late than never.

On the other hand, we appeal to the teachers to dialogue with their union and authorities and go back to school. Governments come and go but the populace stays and educating these poor children will only yield dividends for the future. The saying goes “No one can pay the person that puts knowledge in you.” We salute all teachers!

Mr. President, most presidents and leaders fail because they don’t listen to the people they rule neither do they act on feedbacks received. It is important for government departments to monitor the offices under their departments, know their problems and give correct feedbacks to act on. Ministers are not to be in their offices only but also to be going round and engaging their sub-ordinates and dialogue in all problems than waiting till they get out of hands then they start negotiating.

Mr. President, the temporary ban on travel by government is very timely as the amount of money spent on travelling by your government officials is just unbelievable. We hope that this ban doesn’t just stop on paper work but put into action and strict measures put in place.

Whilst the ban is being put into effect, it’s important that you also revisit the cost of you travelling with chartered flights while other members of your delegate travel with economic class flights.

With the ban on travelling, the cost and spending will generate the monies which can be used to finance other priority areas like education, Health and create employment for the youths.Strict measures should be also done on fuel of government cars.

Finally Mr. President, the Anti-Crimes Unit of the Gambia Police Force, which is bent on continuing the crackdown on criminals in the country is in dire need of vehicles and other equipment to help them in their work.

We are calling on government, philanthropists and donors to come to their aid as this will go a long way in helping them to secure and maintain the peace and security of the country.

Good day!