Our fate hangs in the balance

Tuesday, January 03, 2017

We have entered a very interesting year. While the year is full of hope – as it presents new opportunities for growth and development nationally and individually - our fate is hanging in the balance.

As the year rolls on, our nation has many bridges to cross in the face of many challenges.

These challenges include the current transitional period leading to 19 January this year, when the President-elect of our nation should be inaugurated. 

The siting president has filed a petition in court against the result declared on 2 December 2016, and this matter is expected to be heard in court on 10 January.

Meanwhile, the President has reiterated his call for a fresh election, and vowed to defend The Gambia against any external aggression, in readiness for any confrontation by any force, be it ECOWAS or otherwise.

ECOWAS leaders, on the other hand, have stated that they are prepared to ensure that President-elect Adama Barrow is inaugurated on 19 January this year - just 16 days to go from today.

This situation has placed the nation on tenterhooks as we await these dates – the 10th and the 19th of January.

But all we are calling for is a peaceful resolution of the political impasse the nation is faced with.

As the former Speaker of the National Assembly rightly stated, the two leaders could “find agreement that will preserve the peace and avoid conflict”, that they would do all that is in their “God-given powers to avert a violent conflict, such as those that have claimed the lives of thousands of women and children in our sub-region in the last three decades and destroyed their future prospects”.

We cannot afford to go that way if all parties in the issue listen to reason, and consider the lives of the people of our peaceful and beloved nation. 

Understanding, deep reasoning, negotiation and some compromise would land us on a safe shore.

All, including the two leaders, have over and again stated that they want peace and do not want confrontation; we should, therefore, ensure peace reigns supreme by coming to terms and agree on a peaceful change of leadership and government.

Where there is a will there is a way.  The president-elect also stated this fact in his statement of response to the sitting president, which reads:  “To conclude, one must assert that wherever there is a will there is a way. Hence, the peace of the country is in our hands. If we all have the will to safeguard it there will be a way to ensure that justice guides our action to build a united, free and prosperous Gambia that would guarantee peace to all at all times.”

Let us, therefore, endeavour to see that we solve this political impasse amicably, because, as it is, the nation is on tenterhooks and our fate hangs in the balance.

“To forgive is the highest, most beautiful form of love. In return, you will receive untold peace and happiness ”

Robert Muller