Apr 20, 2009, 7:09 AM
My first pre-occupation as President and commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces, and a patriot, and the most sacred at that, is to preserve at every instance and in every circumstance, the lives of Gambians.
And this is a duty, I hold sacred as I have always strive for peace and security of our nation and Africa.
During this entire time that Allah SWT in his infinite wisdom has permitted me to exercise power, and throughout the time that the sovereign people of The Gambia have put their confidence in me, my primary pre-occupation has been to uphold the dignity of our people and the sovereignty of this great nation.
As a result of all the numerous sacrifices that we and those before us have made as a nation, The Gambia has affirmed its desire to determine its own future and destiny.
This is a course I have always been ready to defend, and even with my life. All the actions we have taken towards building this nation up to this point have distinguished us among the community of nations and given us pride of place in history.
All this while, as a Muslim and a patriot, I believed it is not necessary that a single drop of blood be shed, since the beginning of this political impasse that our dear nation is going through. I promised before Allah SWT and the entire nation that all the issues we currently face will be resolved peacefully.
I am indeed thankful to Allah SWT that up till now not even a single causality has been registered. I believe in the importance of dialogue, and in the capacity of Africans to resolve among themselves all the challenges on the way towards democracy, economic and social development.
It is as a result of this that I have decided today, in good conscience, to relinquish the mantle of leadership of this country, our great nation, with infinite gratitude to all Gambians, women, children, youths and men and friends of The Gambia who have supported me for 22 years in the building of a modern Gambia.
I put above, all and everything, the independence of the free and proud people of The Gambia, and I will always together with you defend this independence that we so dearly fought and won.
My decision today was not dictated by anything else, but by the supreme interest of you the Gambian people and our dear country, taking into consideration my prayer and desire that peace and security continue to reign in The Gambia.
At a time when we are witnessing trouble and fear in other parts of Africa and the world, the peace and security of The Gambia is our collective heritage, which we must jealously guard and defend.
I am proud and honoured to have served our country The Gambia.
While thanking all of you, men, women and children, members of the armed and security services, humble citizens and all those who have supported me, and those who were against me during this period, I implore them all to put the supreme interest of our nation, The Gambia, above all partisan interest and endeavour working together as one nation, to continue to preserve the highly cherished achievements of the country’s sovereignty, peace, stability and integrity, as well as the economic achievements realised during these years.
I pray that The Gambia our homeland continues to be united and prosperous for the welfare of each and every one of us, and be the pride of all.
I summit myself only to the judgement of Allah SWT whose judgement is above all and beyond man, time and history.
The Almighty Allah SWT is the only guarantor of truth and justice.
Finally, I am truly and sincerely proud to have been of service to you and our noble nation.
I wish to thank each and every one of the security forces, members of governments present and past, my party militants and most importantly you the Gambian people and National Assembly members, past and present, for the confidence vested in me and your loyal support.
I pray that Allah SWT continues to light our path and to shower his mercy and blessings on our great and beautiful country.
I wish to take this opportunity to thank my mother, my wife and children for all their prayers and support throughout the past 22 years.
I thank you all, and may Allah SWT continue to bless our motherland.