Halifa Sallah, the chairperson of the inter-party committee, has said that
political parties are mere instrument of leadership through exercising
Hon. Sallah was speaking yesterday at Ocean Bay Hotel during the launching of Commonwealth Partnership for Democracy Supporting Political Parties for inclusive and Accountable Politics. He said the project is designed to enhance the battle against marginalisation.
The project is built on the theme: Enhancing Women, Youth and Politically Marginalised Group’s Political Participation and Representation in Decision Making Processes and Institution.’
“The starting of democracy is freedom of thought; without exercising freedom of thought, there cannot be free exchange of information and without information; there can’t be knowledge, and without knowledge, there can be no decision making. So freedom of thought is the cornerstone of democratisation.”
He added that this guides freedom of expression, and without exercising freedom of expression there will be no dialogue. “We will not be able to move people from one direction to another, there will be no freedom of association and we will not be talking about political party.”
According to Hon. Sallah, Section 25 of the 1997 Constitution provides for freedom of thought, freedom of expression, freedom of association including political association of all trade unions.
He said that if one knows this, he/she own him/herself, which he said is the pillar of democracy. He said that this makes one a sovereign person as sovereignty resides in oneself.
He added hat is the foundation of our democracy and that is why we have political association.
Other speakers were: Ndey Secka, chairperson, Gambia Federation of the Disable, Alieu Momarr Njai, chairman, Independent Electoral Commission, and executive secretary National Youth Council, Lamin Darboe.