Apr 3, 2013, 11:06 AM
morning Mr. President, once again we take this opportunity to wish you a happy
new year and also to congratulate you on the formation of your new political
party, National People’s Party (NPP).
Mr. President one important issue that presently needs urgent attention is the leadership crisis that has gripped the Supreme Islamic Council (SIC) before it escalates to an unwanted situation.
It could be recalled that last week, the Majmou’atu Rawdatil Majaalis, formed a new executive claiming to be the rightful body to lead the Gambia Supreme Islamic Council (GSIC).
This development came barely months after they urged the country’s supreme Islamic council to call a congress for election of a new executive because according to them, the current executive’s term expired long time ago.
The GSIC has also questioned the credibility of the Rawdatul Majlis, saying that they are not a registered member of the Supreme Islamic Council, stressing that only registered Islamic Organisations have a say in the selection or election of any leader of the organisation.
As the war of words for leadership position at The Gambia Supreme Islamic Council (SIC), the country’s main or highest Muslim decision-making movement continues, there is need for dialogue to reach a consensus. This rather unfortunate war of words is only tearing the country’s mainly Muslim majority apart. We are a country of decent people. We have exercised maturity even through the heights of many beliefs which was a herculean task. Let’s exercise the same maturity.
Mr. President at the moment there aren’t national issues that need urgent attention than solving the SIC leadership row. Therefore, your government needs to immediately establish an independent task-force committee that will be working with the two bodies in order to address the crisis for the betterment of the country’s peace and stability.
Taking into account that about 95% of Gambia’s population are Muslims, hence no one needs to remind you that a crisis of such nature has the potential to destabilise the country if it’s not addressed. In fact, it can even set the country on fire.
Mr. President, the government must come out with firm decision so that this leadership row will be put to rest in order to enable the rightful body take the mantle of leadership of the Islamic Council in the country.
Mr. President, Operation Three Years Jotna movement is claiming that they will protest come January 20 and also former ruling party, APRC also want to protest come January 17 to demand former President Jammeh’s return if the days are to go by. Now the question is what if the supporters of one of the groups claiming to be the rightful body of GSIC also want to protest, will the security of the country be able to handle all these protests? Thus you need to act fast.
Mr. President our security apparatus also need to strengthen their operations. The recent robbery in an Islamic Bank in Farafenni also needs our security apparatus to continue on their patrols. In fact, Farafenni over the years has been a target for armed robbery.
Therefore, authorities should act swiftly to eradicate this ugly phenomenon in the country. Certainly, we all should put our hands on deck to collaborate with the security to minimise the rate of robbery in the country. The recent robbery incidents raise question and call for concerted effort by all stakeholders to work with the security forces so that we can eradicate robbery.
Mr. President we acknowledge the numerous efforts being undertaken by the government in addressing unemployment and related problems in country. However, there’s still more to be done in addressing this phenomenon. It is an indisputable fact that when young people are not employed they can resort to anything to eke out a living. With the help of the International communities, illegal migration should be eradicated to avoid increases in youths venturing in the illegal migration journey.
Finally, Mr. President, as we have entered the year 2020, we hope that the country will witness an unprecedented development from all sectors more especially in addressing youth unemployment of the country among other pertaining issues.