Alagi Yorro Jallow
Mamudu: The tragedy of the Gambia is that there has never been a critical mass huge enough to embrace the intellectual and civic responsibilities of our transcendence as a nation. The bane of our transcendence in the Gambia is that too many people who imagine themselves grand envisioners of project nationhood are better off as companions of, in championing transient and limited ethnic and political agendas.
Justice is the first condition of our humanity. The Rule of Law is on ideal in an array of values that dominates liberal political morality: others include democracy, human rights, social justice, and economic freedom. This is the quality or state of being transcendent envisioning of society that generations of our leaders have not been able to rise and embrace, bogged down as they are by invidious base instincts.
Mamudu: Paul Manafort, Donald Trump’s campaign guru is on trial; in the U.S.A. What? Zero bail – locked up for more than 2 weeks. Why? Tax fraud, money laundering and illegal lobbying. Again? If convicted, he faces a time-consuming jail term. So? Because we have many, many ‘Manaforts’; in the Gambia. What! Their files will gyrate and somersault from the offices of the Auditor-General, CID, Police, National Assembly Select committees, Director of Public Prosecutions and the Courts – till 2021-2026 Encore? Paul Manafort is on trial. In the U.S.A; other Manaforts in the Gambia cozying up to regime.
Mamudu: When it comes to exposing and fight corruptibility and criminality? Adama is ‘hapless’: Mamudu why would Adama want to treat thieves with kid’s gloves when they steal from the public? Why would Adama discreetly disappoint when he did appoint rather ambiguous? The Gambia: is endowed with resources that are ‘endeared’, by a few of his cabal. People no longer do subtle corruption in this country. Corruption is the norm. Every sector is involved, not just the political class. The civil service stinks.
Mamudu: Adama’s hope and change has given some us fear and loathing. It is the common thing to assume that corruption is a leadership challenge. Most times people blame and curse leaders. But corruption is more endemic. It permeates the entire society from the leaders to the followers so to say.
We want a country that is free from corruption: We want a kind of leadership to end official racketeering, fraud, malfeasance and crookedness? We need a critical assessment of ourselves as Gambians.Adama, you have not provided a kind of leadership that is suitable? Where did you go wrong? Adama, corrupt officers are misbehaving engaged in profiteering, nepotism and venality. They are stealing public resources. They have accessed power to put money in their pockets. This is not the leadership Gambians want. We are sufficiently not afraid to speak about the wrong things they are doing.
Mamudu: Rule of law and Justice codifies the core values of good governance. Rule of law is a principle under which all persons, institutions, and entities are accountable to laws that are publicly promulgated: Mamudu; a united Gambia is greater thing than a divided one, a strong National Assembly is a greater thing than a weak one, a country governed by the rule of law is a greater thing than a kangaroo one, a corruption free country is better than one infested by thieves, and a strong economy is greater than a people struggling with poverty.Adama;If all you want is to rule people, you want a small thing! Please deliver yourself from such a wrong mindset.
Mamudu: If every outrage is tolerable and defensible because you support the President (everything you would not have countenanced under the previous president suddenly has legitimacy for you now), if every violation is rationalizable for you because you have empathy for the government in power, if the leaders in political spaces is sweet music to your ears because of a long history of animosity between politicians and ethnicities in the country and just because of your own ethnicity is not at the receiving end of such violations today, if every outrage is tolerable because you and the victim of the outrage are not of the same faith, you have no business in the business of trying to envision the future of the Gambian society.
Mamudu: The Janneh Commission of Inquiry established to investigate, systematic, disorderly pillage and marauding of the Gambia’s economic and financial resources allegedly caused by Yahya Jammeh and his close allies during his administration; was a new beginning of an anti-graft commission but is heavily criticized and branded incompetent and unable to fight corruption and economic atrocities in which individuals or collectivities of people purposively acted. Given that high-profile corruption continues unabated in the country; while the government and the Janneh commission looks on helplessly, it is easy for Gambians to conclude that perhaps the main purpose of the commission is to form a firewall around corruption cartels, especially when the commission gets sucked into the mess and has to investigate itself.
Justice, Wole Soyinka says, is the first condition of humanity. Sadly, this is not his most famous ‘quotable quote’ among political leadership. What many Gambians learn by rote is that other quote from his book, The Man Died. The two quotes, as indeed the entirety of Soyinka’s work and vision, are rooted in a transcendent view of society and her future.
When Soyinka says justice is the first condition of humanity, he does not pause to enter qualifications, caveats, conditions, equivocation, and hesitation. He posited that transcendent vision of justice, fairness in a society foregrounds humanity beyond the base of instincts fed by ethnicity, religion, and politics.
In other words, when Wole Soyinka says justice is the first condition of humanity, there is no pause to determine one’s race, religion, ethnicity, and politics before the statement is deemed applicable to anyone. There is no equivocation because there is a very long history of hate, animus, and irreconcilable opposition amongst society’s own ethnic groupings. There is no hesitation because for one to belong to Christianity or Islam, two faiths. There is no qualification because of one’s political leanings or affiliation.