(Thursday, 5th September 2019 Issue)
The resting place of the remains of the first Gambian President Sir Dawda Kairaba Jawara has been rated and classified to be more than just a resting place but a place of inspiration for generations of Gambian and non-Gambians of today, tomorrow and those to visit The Gambia. This is because it is going to be a site of attraction where education and knowledge would be acquired.
Hassoum Ceesay, a researcher, historian and also the acting director general of National Center for Arts and Culture affirmed that the late president deserved the state burial accorded to him and that the place where he’s buried befits him. He said “being a champion of democracy and multiparty rule, it is an appropriate place for him to lie in eternal life because the National Assembly is a symbol of The Gambia’s democracy.”
Further to the honour he deserved, he said the tomb of the late President Sir Dawda Kairaba Jawara would be turned to a mausoleum and visitor’s center to serve as a museum /library “where generation and future generations can come and pay homage to his remains and also see some of his arti-facts materials which he had worked with such as his books, clothes, papers among others.”
He added that “it is for people to learn about what he represented when he was alive in terms of stability, peace, rule of law and respect for human rights and the virtue which he stood for. Therefore it is going to be more than a resting place but a place of inspiration, education and knowledge for the generations of Gambians and non-Gambians today, tomorrow and those to visit The Gambia in future.”
Commenting on the late president’s leadership when he was alive, DG Hassoum said the late Sir Dawda’s leadership style has many lessons for both present and future generations to learn about, citing dialogue as key. “Number one is dialogue to solve our problems; be it political, economical and social. Sir Dawda didn’t teach us to protest, demonstrate, destroy or burn things as all issues facing as a country even the struggle for independence then came through dialogue as political parties met to discuss them, so dialogue should be the center.”
The number two lesson, he stated is to “maintain peace, stability, and the rule of law. “This means to maintain ethnic and religious peace and harmony, internal stability particularly maintaining good relationship. While the rule of law means allowing justice to take its course no matter who is involved or what is involved.
“Because when the rule of law is promoted people will have faith in government, in the country because we will be sure of justice.”