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Welcome, GPU’s new executive!

Apr 21, 2015, 10:54 AM

At the 7th triennial congress of the Gambia Press Union (GPU) on Saturday, a new nine-member executive committee has been elected to man the affairs of the union for the next three years.

Emil Touray was elected, for the second and final term, as president; he is one of the two members of the previous executive that were returned to power.

The other one is Sarjo Camara, who was a co-opted member but now the 2nd assistant secretary general.

We say hearty congratulations to the new executive and wish them good luck in their endeavours.

We have no doubt in their competence, credibility and integrity, for that is why they were able to stand out and gained the trust of members of the Gambia media fraternity, who have given them the mantle of running the union for the next three years.

We must also thank all the journalists who were at the congress for not only exercising their franchise right, but did so with maturity.

Having said that, one of the things we wish to remind the new executive is that their primary responsibility is to serve as guardian of the constitution.

This seems very obvious, but it is fundamental and often overlooked.The executive has to make sure that they operate in line with the constitution of the union, for it is in this document that the members state how they should be governed, hence must be governed in that way by any executive at all times.

Even if the executive should take the union to paradise, that action or line of direction must be in tandem with the GPU constitution.

We also wish to remind the new team that the task already on their plate is to unite journalists, and maintain a serene and progressive journalism fraternity, which was going down the line of disunity and division during the electioneering.

They have to do their utmost to ensure the unity of the media fraternity.

Also, the executive has to be more pro-active and vigorous in their defence of freedom of expression and freedom of the press, in particular.

For GPU members, they should not relax or relent in continuing to keep the new executive on their toes.

They should now start to make sure that the executive remains focused, and does the right thing.

Members must also make sure that they have a say on how the union is operated by attending GPU’s periodic meetings, and use that forum to raise their concerns or comments, as the barking dog always scares the thief.

It is not the best idea to wait until congress, and we start to point out the executive’s weaknesses so as to use that as political score point.

Those weaknesses could have been pointed out and be corrected long before congress, in the interest of the union.

Once again, we congratulate the new executive and welcome them into office.

In a nutshell, we wish to reiterate that the executive as well as the members must be seen to be doing what is expected of them.

Remember a chain is as strong as its weakest link; the executive cannot be very effective and efficient in their duties when the general members are weak, just like a strong general membership cannot be led by a weak executive.

All have to play their part, and play it well!

“ A good leader takes a little more than his share of the blame, a little less than his share of the credit.”

Arnold H. Glasow