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Darboe says UDP faces insidious plans with attempt to disqualify him

Apr 20, 2021, 12:21 PM | Article By: Sankulleh Gibril Janko & Adama Tine

The secretary general and leader of the United Democratic Party (UDP), Ousainou Darboe says attempts are being made to plant incriminating materials on his party members and eventually disqualify his presidential candidature ahead of the December polls.

The veteran lawyer made the remarks at a press briefing on Monday at his office along Kairaba Avenue in response to cannabis sativa the police allegedly found in one of the party’s vehicles over the weekend.

The police recently reported that a security patrol taskforce had intercepted a vehicle belonging to the UDP with suspected cannabis.

Having been privy to an intelligence report prior to the incident, the presidential aspirant believes there may be a foul play, although he won't point fingers at anyone.

"About three months ago, I have intelligence report, information, that I should advise Momodou Sabally, Ebrima Dibba, Karfa Sonko, Honourable Saho, Ya Kumba Jaiteh and myself, we should be very careful, where we park our vehicles, even if we take our vehicles to car wash, we must make sure that somebody stays in the vehicle," he revealed.

"Because the scheme now is; particularly me is to plant incriminating materials on us and for Sabally, Dibba, Saho, Ya Kumba to silence them.

"And me to disqualify me."

Darboe said he is not accusing anyone, while adding that he did caution the aforementioned people to be careful.

He went on to say that he has been informed they have knowledge of Karfa's movements including where he parks his vehicle and the ghetto he goes to.

He said there are decent people in The Gambia who would not stand to see innocent people tainted with criminality.

He said suppose they succeeded in disqualifying the party; he will vie as an independent candidate, adding that all of the UDP sympathisers would still throw their support behind him.

He accused the authorities of diverting the most pressing issues that matter to Gambians, citing the skyrocketing prices of basic commodities in the market, insufficient electricity and water supply in some parts of the country.

Although he is not defending the use of cannabis, the UDP party leader tasked the government to tell Gambians how far they have gone with the almost three tons of cocaine that involved one Banta Keita whose whereabouts remain unknown.

Darboe reiterated that UDP as a party has always been against criminality in the country, adding that was why he never defended anyone for drug cases to show his stance against the use of drugs.

“In my career as a lawyer I categorically refused defending anyone with drug cases and as a result we are not claiming innocence on the part of the gentleman because he has made his point clear that no drug was with him and he is innocent,” he noted.

According to him, the past 72 hours had been a concern for everyone as a lot of publicity had been made, some were very positive, some negative and others sitting on the fence but it is important for the Gambian people to be informed of the genesis of the said incident.

Several weeks ago, we took two of our vehicles to a mechanic by the name Mr. Darboe so that they could be well serviced and put in a state that is very road worthy.

“Mr. Darboe is someone I know personally since 1996 and has been a member of UDP and that is why we entrusted him with the responsibility of taking care of our vehicles,” he disclosed.

“I last communicated to the said Mr. Darboe last Tuesday because after the vehicles were out for quite a long time and whatever work needed was expected to finish but his promise to me was that within two to three days, the vehicles would be delivered,” he divulged.

He said the said individual actions were individual, not in the name of the party.

He urged the police to conduct a thorough and fair investigation of the matter.

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