‘We don’t want a picture president’

Wednesday, November 07, 2018

Alh. Modou Khan, a native of Dingerai village in Niani District, Central River Region has said that The Gambia does not want a ‘picture president’- i.e.  A president who is too old and would not be able to function effectively.

The Gambia, he said, needs a young educated president, who can bring about robust development and thus urged the Constitutional Review Commission to include an age-limit in the new constitution.

Khan was speaking on Tuesday at Feridawsy village during the ongoing civic education public sensitization campaign organized by National Council for Civic Education (NCCE) in partnership with the Constitutional Review Commission (CRC). The ongoing outreach is design to prepare and set the ground for the public consultations across the country. 

Alh. Sait Sallah, a native of Fass Yallal, underscored the importance of education, saying education is what develops a nation and as such anyone vying for president, national assembly member, chairperson or councilor’s position should be someone who is educated.

Sallah also called for the introduction of the presidential term limit in the new constitution, adding that once presidents over stayed they tend to abuse power.

Batch Mbye of Feridawsy village, said the monthly earning of most Gambians is very low and as such, free basic education should be extended to university level.

He made reference to countries where university students enjoyed free education and accommodation courtesy of their governments, saying The Gambia should introduce the same.

On citizenship, Mbaye believes that anyone born in The Gambia even when both parents are foreigners should be given citizenship.

Samba Thop of Feridawsy and Maimuna Barry, lady councilor of Wassu ward all in Niani district, called for the empowerment of women in the new constitution.

She indicated that in most cases women are not fully considered when it comes to inheritance and land ownership and called on the CRC to capture that aspect in the new constitution.

Barry urges all to positively contribute in the drafting of the new constitution, to ensure it is a constitution for all and by all.

Saikou Jarra, chairman of Wassu Village Development Committee, said it is a blessing that everybody is given the opportunity to contribute in the drafting of the new constitution.

Wassu Deputy, Imam Alh. Sankung Suwareh urges youths to take a lead in the drafting of the new constitution as future leaders.

Alh. Pierre Bah chief of Niani commended the CRC for the outreach tour, saying that citizens’ drafting the new constitution is a move to the right direction.

Chief Bah tasked people of his district to come out in their numbers on the day of the consultation proper and add their inputs.

Author: Cherno Omar Bobb reporting from Wassu