Let’s maintain regular communication

Friday, August 25, 2017

We are moved by the communication channel promised by the Minister of Information at his maiden press briefing held yesterday at his office in Kanifing.

The important and long overdue issue about the position of the vice presidency was discussed. And according to reports it has been revealed that someone will soon be appointed to serve as our full-fledged vice president.  This is good to hear although such openness to the media and the nation should have been exercised long before this time, as everyone in the country and beyond wants to know the Vice President of The Gambia.

We really don’t know why it has taken the government so much time to tell us who will be serving our nation as vice president. Our take here though is to emphasise the importance of communication, which was lacking on the issue of the VP hence a lot of criticisms and speculations have been flying around the country about the position of the VP.

This could be effaced in the hearts and minds of the people as the spirit of sharing information and communication with the media and the general public continues.

But one thing we would like to remind the information minister and the Barrow government is that undue silence on some pertinent national issues irritates.

In this instance the long silence or somehow inaction over the situation surrounding the office of the Vice President attracts so much anger, resentment and antagonism from the populace, and a lot of things could go bad because of that. Silence, they say, destroys while communication creates. So we must respect the value of communication and ensure that it prevails all the time, for it is the human connection that serves as a key to understanding, intimacy and mutual valuing.

It is therefore good that the Info minister has put plans in place to hold regular monthly press briefing, where pertinent national issues will be tabled and discussed, such as the activities within and outside the government.

This promotes healthy debates over such germane issues as employment and job creation, the tourism sector and other socio-economic issues of the country.

We must therefore endeavour to be in constant communication in order to brainstorm, see the problems or challenges and be part of the solutions to those challenges.

We the media and the general public must not be shut out on such important national issues as democracy, the rule of law, security, health and economic challenges of the country, for we are partners in development.

The rate of our dalasi is dwindling, jobs are needed, there is budget deficit, security concern, and human rights issues, the cost of living is rising by the day, and there are concerns of grand and petty corruption in the system; all these are debatable issues for solution finding. Therefore let’s communicate and create and shun silence - in such matters - which does not augur well for our new dispensation.

“The art of communication is the language of leadership.“
James Humes