#Editorial

GOOD MORNING  PRESIDENT: On campaigns, covid-19 safety measures, Diaspora voting rights, others

Nov 15, 2021, 12:28 PM

Mr President, campaigns have started since last week and so far so good, no incident has been reported, which is encouraging.

The six presidential candidates should always advocate for peace and ask their militants to wear masks during rallies because of the COVID-19.

Hate speech and false allegations should be avoided. Voters want to know their programmes when elected.

Mr. President, issues like migration, skills training for the youth who are 62% of the population should be given opportunities to learn and be trained in specific fields. This should be part of your top priorities.

The high cost of living, especially basic commodities, should be addressed because the absence of price control is making shopkeepers introduce their own prices.

The fuel crisis is causing a lot of rumours in town and the arrest of the Gampetroleum boss, Saihou Drammeh and others who have been invited for questioning should be made clear to the public. After the investigations, the public would want to know the true picture of the story.

As a Government, there should not be scarcity of fuel and all defaulters should be punished.

Mr. President, there are two important issues that all the six candidates failed to mention; abolition of the draconian media laws to support the media which is the Fourth Estate and the development of sports in the country.

Sport brings unity and foreign exchange, and needs to be given attention.

Mr. President, the Diaspora which is the 8th region of the Gambia must be given all the privileges of voting rights, facilitate lands when they buy them and encourage them to invest in the country with some incentives.

They must have representatives in parliament like other African countries. The Diaspora according to official sources contributed 590.million US dollars in remittances to national development last year, which represents 48% of the GDP. Gambia is among 15 countries with the highest number of educated migrants.

Any elected Presidential candidate should work on upgrading the salaries of civil servants and allocating building allowances to senior officials as it happened during the First Republic.

Security also should be a priority to protect people in the country, fight corruption and tribalism. Agriculture and Tourism should be given attention. Respect of human rights and rule of law should be upheld.

Finally Mr. President, let’s pray every day for a peaceful election. Losers should accept defeat and congratulate the winner whilst the winner would work for the betterment of The Gambia, Our Homeland.

Good day!

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