Sep 7, 2016, 2:25 PM
standard bearer Adama Barrow has called on Gambians across the country to use
their votes to redeem themselves and The Gambia from “oppression and
dictatorship”, to which they have been subjected for 22 years.
Barrow made this remark in Basori Kombo East, Brufut and Jambur at the weekend, after being welcomed to the Kombos, from his 8-day tour in the provincial areas, by thousands of people who took to the streets on Friday to rally behind and demonstrate their support for the Coalition.
Adama Barrow told the cheering crowds that the leadership of the current government had been exercising its will on the people, and cared less about their feelings and the oppression they faced.
“We have all seen what has been happening to us for the last 22 years, and these included suffering, poverty, forced disappearance and torture; and we had nothing to do about it, because you are scared of being targeted or sent to exile. Now is the time for us to end all these by using our votes to express our anger, and say ‘enough is enough’ and it is us who gave him power, but if he is abusing it, we should take it back to free ourselves from hell.”
Barrow added that “it is now time for the Gambian people to fight against dictatorship in the country by using your votes; nothing else, no violence, no fighting, just to vote for the coalition: ‘one Gambia one people’, and experience again what the good life is.”
Halifa Sallah, spokesperson of the coalition, told the cheering crowd that the only way they could end their sufferings is by using their votes to make a change, and that if they failed to do so, it means they would keep on suffering until they die.
Folonko Bojang, a resident of Kombo Jambur, in his message to the jubilant crowd of people, said that since 1994 “the country had been going backwards instead of forward, all because of bad governance”.
“We have suffered enough because we are farmers and very poor, but we would not like our children to be poor also and experience such ordeals as us in their lives. So the best thing to do is to have a change of government and usher in a government of the people, that listens to and works with the people to ensure everybody contributes their ideas, skills and knowledge in making The Gambia a great nation.
“We don’t want a situation where the rich are getting richer and the poor poorer; so vote for the coalition, come December 1.”
Dr Isatou Touray, another member of the coalition, said the Gambian women in the past 22years have been used to vote in the government of the day, and not to really empower themselves. She made this remark at a rally in Kombo Farato on Sunday.
She mentioned how female gardeners have been struggling to sell their produce in stark competition with what is being produced by the country’s leader, among other actions that are meant at keeping them only as voters and not really to change their economic, social and political status.
“Now it is time for us the women to fight for ourselves, just by using our votes and putting it in the right place; that is, the coalition, which will make women their first priority, because we are the mothers, sisters and wives and in every society women are always important.”
Mam Ceesay, a coalition supporter, in her remarks, told her fellow women that every five years they are told the same thing: that “if you vote for us we will do this and that”, and they would vote. But over the years they had not realised any real change in their socio-economic condition.
“Enough is enough! We women have suffered enough; therefore, we will now change the way we do things by voting for the coalition, under ‘one people one voice’, come December 1,” she said.