Aug 11, 2008, 7:49 AM
and other nationals in The Gambia last Friday converged at the Arch 22nd in
Banjul to celebrate the 22nd anniversary of the 22nd July Revolution.
The celebration, attended by foreign dignitaries, was characterised by a march-past of the various security units, school children, institutions, women’s groups, among other activities.
At the celebration, some security officers were awarded with a sword of authority by the Gambian leader and a 21-gun salute was also witnessed as usual.
Speaking on the occasion, President Yayha Jammeh said 2016 marked the 22nd anniversary of “the glorious 22nd July Revolution”.
The historic and momentous occasion of the glorious 22nd July Revolution, which took place 22 years ago, was being marked to reflect on the great achievement it had brought to The Gambia in all development sectors since 1994, with the aim of continuing its development stride.
President Jammeh said the occasion was also a moment to let the people reflect on the symbolism of the 22nd anniversary, which marks 22 years of the revolution that kick-started on 22nd July 1994.
He said the revolution had a lot of achievements and positive lessons for individuals, and the collective, which should reinforce people’s belief that with the guidance and support of the Almighty Allah the revolution would continue to strive to meet the needed developments of The Gambia.
“In responding to the numerous challenges that pave our collective effort to attain our economic development, my government implemented numerous strategies and information that have contributed immensely to the attainment of development aspirations, in agriculture, education, health, energy, women empowerment, right of the women and children, improved road and transport infrastructure among other laudable achievements that we continue to celebrate with great pride,” he said.
President Jammeh also said despite the numerous gains registered by his government in areas such as food self-sufficiency, they would continue to develop the country as they have a long way to go.
“Today being a Friday 22nd July, which is unprecedented, I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone and remember all those who were with us from 1994 to date.”
He said 22 years is a long period of time along the way, and “there are people that have answered to the call of the Almighty Allah and they are not with us today”.
He, therefore, called on all at the occasion to stand up and offer a minute of silent prayers for the departed souls and “patriotic citizens” associated with the July 22nd Revolution since at a very difficult time of the struggle.
He said many were saying that the revolution would not last for three days, some said three weeks, others said three months, and “today it is 22 years thanks to the Almighty Allah”.
He also said the British rule could not achieve a quarter of what the July 22nd Revolution had achieved, after 31 years of the First Republic, when they had the support of everybody.
He said with the Almighty Allah on their side, “nobody can kill” the 22nd July Revolution because it is guided by the Almighty Allah and nobody can do anything about it.
“On this particular point, I want to thank all those who stood with us from day one and continue to stand with us in solidarity with mutual respect,” he said.
He said The Gambia would never be colonised twice and it shall never be enslaved twice, and those “so-called powers that wanted to colonise us have failed”.
He said: “I love challenges and I believe in Almighty Allah. I want to thank you the Gambian people and also the Gambian women and children who have been very supportive of the 22nd July Revolution.”
He commended Gambian women for they have always been at the forefront of the revolution, saying he was proud of them for their participation in national development.
He said as regards the promotion of women and youth empowerment, The Gambia is exceptional in Africa, in particular.
He said one of his most difficult tasks was getting people to change attitude towards national development endeavours; lackadaisical attitudes he said had been nurtured over the past 400 years.
This is a disease that had been chronic in the people for four hundred and thirty-one years, he added, saying it was not easy to eradicate it in a short period of time, “but thanks to the Almighty Allah, today we have achieved that most important aspect in change of attitudes”.
President Jammeh also applauded The Gambia as the only nation, despite of your colour, tribe and race you can walk around 24 hours day and night “nobody will harass you”.
“So in this country we believe in the Almighty Allah,” he said.