Aug 10, 2020, 12:34 PM
A group of civil society organisations and frontline workers has asked President Adama Barrow to address Gambians on the state of the nation within 72 hours amid covid-19 crisis that has gripped the nation.
He emphasised that significant milestones have been achieved, notably the completion of the consultations and submission of a draft constitution that to all intents and purposes reflects the sovereign will and aspirations of the Gambian people, as well as the completion and submission of the highly acclaimed report of the TRRC. He added that these two achievements were the central pillars of the Gambia’s much heralded transitional justice programme.
“We have just concluded a very peaceful and orderly presidential election. I congratulate all the candidates and indeed the entire people of The Gambia for their tolerance, patience, maturity and indulgence in ensuring that the process was enviable and admirable in many respects. More significantly, however, our democracy has been strengthened and the value of respect for and resort to the law as the arbiter of societal disputes equally reinforced.”
The former TRRC lead counsel said all is not well, saying tribalism reared its ugly head during and the post electioneering period. If this is not tamed, he added, shackled and buried, it could upset the peace and democracy dividends our country currently enjoys.
The young politician is concerned about the country’s leadership, while stating that the propensity of the executive to sacrifice “our highly important and very expensive transitional justice programme” at the altar of political expediency is quite worrisome.
Faal further buttressed that these critical issues together with the unbridled prices of basic commodities, massive youth unemployment, lack of opportunities for the youth, women and other vulnerable groups as well as poor infrastructure and non-existent healthcare system set a very daunting agenda for our country in the not too distant future.
“While this litany of imperatives may appear daunting, they are not insurmountable. We have unyielding faith in the ability of Gambians to achieve durable solutions to difficult problems even against the odds. The responsibility belongs to all of us (whether we are in government or not), to work arduously for the alleviation of the plight of our people.”
“With greater unity and patriotism, less corruption and more rule of law and good governance and a healthy dose of meritocracy, we would be able to achieve the development goals of our people.”
The lawyer said irrespective of our political differences, people must be united with the goals of strengthening the unity and cohesion of the entire Gambian people and improving their living conditions and economic well-being.
He challenged the government to honour its promise to the people by delivering on their wishes and aspirations.
Currently, there are 127 non-Gambian ECOWAS Citizens languishing in Gambian cells, according to a ECOWAS Status Report.
Gambia’s trade challenges continue as the country’s main trading good value continues to depreciate in the international market due to the continuous presence of aflatoxin in our groundnuts.