Today, as most Gambians set their minds to a new Gambia, we begin to hope the upcoming elections will yield us our desired results. We understand that the APRC regime have swept many government-created obstacles to our prosperity as a nation, place the welfare of the country squarely on the hands of individuals, and put the harshest Legislation in effect to dawned our electoral laws making it difficult for a level playing field. At the same time, the regime will cease our wealth, put in laws of retribution, place hurdles for ordinary Gambians not to prosper and allocate the largest chunk of budgets to the state house as a sort of central distribution point for Yaya Jammeh — to deny us everything — for his own personal pleasures or prestige for his family instead of making the hard work of the people worthwhile for the whole nation.
In our fight against dictatorship, we must all be committed to this just cause wholeheartedly— to preserve our society, culture, traditions and most important of all, our people to be free. This will enable us to seek our own goals, placed in a government that assures us the freedom to climb as high as our own drive, fulfil our long awaited ambitions and harness our talent to where it can take us in life. Let us make our goal very clear: Our country is what brought us together from all over the world. Our quest should be to work together and built Gambia to be a great nation of possibilities and built our broken institutions to surpass the highest standards ever imagined, through the hard work of our people. The world knows the kind of people Gambia produces in academia, agriculture, and the great minds able to roll up their sleeves to contribute to any society. I would match the Gambia worker against any in the world because we are very dedicated when given the opportunity .The Gambians are all over the world and their talents fuels many industries and economies of the world. All such people need to be in Gambia — to move our country towards development it needs to sustain itself.
But too many Gambians have moved on because- many are disappointed about happenings in our motherland and others smothered in despair. The regime has created animosities among societies, families and communities. Most people reflect too much on past events in which they were victims, cases in which their family members were wronged, and think deeply about their previous failed relationships to shape their participation into anything. This has made it too difficult to move on and at times too risky to trust people in working together for our common good. Our people, have cried out for change, and in the last 22years, have achieved a historic reversal of our goals and wishes. We all grew up with this proverb and it serves the lesson we need “ A stick thrown in a river and left there for hundred years shall never be a fish or crocodile”. So we can’t fail the next Generation as “the lost children of the smiling coast of Africa”. Hence, we should recognize this enormous challenge and move to meet it in faith, in thought and in courage to free our country. We must act today in the name of generations still to come otherwise history will judge us harshly.
However, we must return to the principles that made us great as one nation with different cultures and traditions to take on this enormous task. All of us must take advantage of the moment of opportunity that presented itself on December 1st to end dictatorship and restore confidence for next future generation. But we should offer our help to the best of our abilities and let others who have expertise, creative energies and the experience to give us the tutelage we need. Out of many Gambians, there are few people who stood amongst many over the span of 22 years to make sure the needs of country comes first before their own interest. They have been way too lonely at times in the fight but have accomplished much boost of the morals we needed. Others have sat on the sidelines criticizing everything but it merely helped to give us the instant cure for our shortcomings.
As we work to end this brutal regime and drive Yaya Jammeh away from our home land, let us try our best to tap that well of human spirit. For too many years now, we’ve trusted some people and placed trust in rules which the regime dictates to save us. Now we know laws are meant to be broken for Yaya Jammeh and his promises failed us miserably. Well, it is true that some amongst us wish conditions to remain as they are for their own personal interest. They, wish conditions of injustice remain to be used on people they despise. They enjoy the provocation to instill fear among the population. They peddle on our misunderstanding to stir the bad feeling among people in order to cripple our resolve to work together. Every setback we encounter in this fight, is used as a new argument to say, “That’s our point you see or I warn you people before”. We must be on guard against such very dangerous notions. It is a great pity people behave as such. We ask such people to fear [GOD] and work honestly with people instead of playing tricks. They should remember people are denied sunlight in chains on solitary confinement in mile 2 prisons. Women are used as pleasures against their will and tortured. Infants are dying as means of rituals to empower Yaya Jammeh’s “Jalangs”. We cannot play fast and loose with damaging information just to be recognized while messing all the good deeds we get from it.
I think it’s about time that we placed trust in ourselves and in each other. The welfare of the country is squarely up to us as Gambians. No other country in this day and age will put aside their needs to come and rescue us. And the country will stand most secure if we all rally behind a united front with the right and honest leadership instead of Yaya Jammeh . This is a man whose ego today have driven him to heights of self-absorption that, he thinks of himself as the best son of Gambia, the bravest to end life, so much materialistic minded, obsession with African trademarks and always advocating for policies or declarations that assure the failure of the next generation and our country. He makes sure he put the most incompetent people as leaders of our prestige institutions who ideas rest on a culture of selfishness and denying the right people chance to fix their broken institutions instead waiting for UNDP or IMF intervention. Yaya Jammeh and his people will be opposing few developmental aid dollars to clean up the filthy neighborhoods, deny providing medication for the hospitals ,sell farm equipment’s donated or loaned to Gambia to neighboring countries and give scholarships to their linage instead of deserving students. They think nothing of spending lavishly on luxury items for their girlfriends and musical jamburees. This phenomenon can be seen in many communities across the country.
Finally, those aspiring to lead our new Gambia are not well served by the low esteem self-appointed spokespeople. Less noted is that they also seem to reject the sensible approach of working together spirit epitomized by the party leaders instead of protectionism. They are actually underplaying the importance of the letting Gambians know their leaders positions well and whether they have the right policies to solves the crisis Yaya jammeh put our country through instead of tailoring messages to demographic groups on the online radios. This will ensure the broader range of voices from all sides and deeper political analysis giving us all these headaches to end soon. This time by God’s grace, the dictator will not manipulate his way into the presidency. Gambians are determine to end this regime and this time, most people are aware that their votes are not for sale to the highest bidder, banging benachins, nice assorbi dresses and soothing sounds coming from drums “Sabarrs”. At the end of the day, Gambians have wrap their heads around the idea of fundamental change is needed to save our country from dictatorship. We can do it this time Gambia.
By Habib ( A Concerned Gambian)