Sonko tells Darboe to resign as UDP leader

Mar 25, 2021, 11:12 AM | Article By: Momodou Jawo

Sheriff Sonko, the chairman of Brikama Area Council (BAC) has called on Ousainou Darboe to resign as the leader of the opposition United Democratic Party (UDP), claiming that he (Darboe) has misled the party.

“I can only join UDP again if they agree to do a public apology to me. If that happens, I think I will accept them and I will be coaching and guiding them. In fact, another condition will be for Darboe and the entire UDP executives to resign because he has misled the party.”

The BAC chairman was speaking to West Coast Radio during an interview after his victory at the Supreme Court: “There’s huge difference between President Barrow and Ousainou Darboe. Barrow is a man of his words and he is someone who believes in democracy and he is a developmental oriented leader whose national development is among his top priority.”

The Supreme Court of The Gambia on Thursday made an landmark ruling that Sheriffo Sonko, the BAC chairman should keep his job following his sacking by the United Democratic Party (UDP). Last year, UDP sacked Sonko with two other councillors in the West Coast Region on the grounds that they were not complying with the rules and regulation of the party.

Relying on the Local Government laws, the party expected Sonko and co to lose their seats automatically because the law states that any elected official loses his/her seat once his/her party sacks them. However, the matter ended, with the Supreme Court declaring that law as unconstitutional.

Sonko, who was asked whether he could compare Barrow and Darboe during the interview said: “Definitely, I am not going to compare the two because they are not the same calibre. By comparing Barrow and Darboe it means I am insulting Barrow.”

Asked about Darboe’s intention of contesting the 2021 presidential election, and whether he (Darboe) can win the much anticipated election, Sonko added: “It’s practically impossible for Darboe to be the next Gambian president. I can bet that if Ousainou Darboe becomes the president of The Gambia in 2021, I will leave politics. It’s a promise.”

“Darboe will never rule this country because the genuine Gambian people see the light and the true colour of this man. He is someone who’s temper and he is not wise. If Darboe was wise he would have advised the team that went with me to court so that they can win. Darboe should even thank President Barrow so much. In fact, why should Darboe not give chance to young UDP members,” he stated, claiming that Darboe is not even qualified to be a presidential candidate.

“I am very much happy because now The Gambian Judiciary system is now a well formed one that no one can play with. Democracy is winning and Adama Barrow being the champion of this democracy in this new dispensation is also winning. Barrow is doing everything possible in ensuring that everyone is treated equally and no one should exercise his or her rights over someone else.”

The BAC chairman further noted: “Darboe wants violence in the country if he is insisting that nothing can stop him from contesting the 2021 presidential election. However, when it comes to respecting our constitution he is not qualified. The reason UDP is making Darboe as their standard-bearer in the next election is because they want violence. UDP is failing and they have already failed. Looking at the good number of people leaving the party; it’s not a good signal.”

Speaking to The Standard on Wednesday, the UDP spokesperson, Almamy Taal, points out that UDP will vet people who put themselves as candidates for the party to ensure they get the right people who understand the values of the party.

“We will get young people; male and female who are qualified and dedicated to the values that the UDP stood for. In the past years we have had wonderful suitable additions to our ranks who will be able to replace all these people who have either resigned or were expelled from the party,” he told Standard.

He said the party accepts the judgment of the Supreme Court and equally congratulates Gambians, who are continuing to test “our laws because there are several unconstitutional laws standing in The Gambia.”

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