#Editorial

Enough of  Jammeh bigotry  and hate speech!

Nov 4, 2021, 11:39 AM

It is an undeniable fact that bigotry and hate speech are a threat to any thriving nascent democracy and stability in particular.

When politicians and opinion leaders are engaged in bigotry and hate speech, this has the potential to jeopardise the peace and unity of a country.

These past weeks, former President Yahya Jammeh has been making incendiary remarks and hate speech while addressing his supporters at various political gatherings in the country. The latest was on Tuesday when he attacked the opposition United Democratic Party (UDP) branding them as a ‘tribalism party’. 

Such bigotry remarks, expressing his hate sentiment must be stopped immediately. It is totally uncalled for and should be condemned by all Gambians. We should bear in mind that we are in an election year and if the former President wants to use that as an opportunity to vent his anger by making such derogatory remarks, after all he got it all wrong. 

Now is the time for the government to act fast and pull the brakes on his tribal politics. The government through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Gambians Abroad should therefore, summon the Equatorial Guinea Ambassador in Senegal, who’s also overseeing The Gambia with a view to expressing its displeasure about former president’s frequent bigotry and hate speech directed to particular political parties or tribe. 

Tribal politics and hate speech have no place in the country’s political scene. And this message should be heeded by all contesting party leaders. They should bear in mind that trading on politics of tribalism and hate speech is not only a threat to national security, but it also retards development. 

Generally, Gambians are peace loving and that trend must continue. We shouldn’t allow ex-president Yahya Jammeh to divide the country based on ethnicity or whatever it might be as he did during his 22 years of misrule. 

It is time for Gambians to unite and rise as one people, one nation destined to live together by Almighty Allah. We should always be wary of individuals and party leaders who want to divide us based on tribe or whatever motive.   

The former president Yahya Jammeh shouldn’t be even given a platform to be throwing his venom, thereby masterminding and inciting not only violence, but also hatred among Gambians. 

We should not forget the startling revelation at the just concluded country’s Truth Commission, which brought to the fore the despicable, gruesome and heinous crimes committed in the country by former president Yahya Jammeh. 

These crimes and atrocities, among other issues tantamount to crime against humanity. So for any individual or political party, who wish to associate itself with Jammeh ideology and sadistic style of politics is indeed pitiable and campaigning on its own downfall. 

“He who makes others next to him small will never be great.”

Johann Gottfried Seume

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