Monday, July 22, 2024

Former National Assembly Member Dumps APRC

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By Alagie Manneh – Following his expulsion from the former ruling APRC party two years ago, famous Lower Saloum politician Pa Malick Ceesay is now with opposition National Reconciliation Party, NRP.

He was speaking to the media for the first time in almost three years since his indictment. He revealed his intention to contest in the upcoming national assembly elections if his people want him to.

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The former Parliamentarian was charged with sixteen counts of economic crimes at the National Enterprise Development Initiative (NEDI) between 2009 to 2012 while he was the coordinator, the charges he said were politically motivated.

Pa Malick disclosed that he did not defect, but was forced to move on after the former APRC party leader, acting under the provisions of the APRC, expelled him from the Gambia’s largest party.

“I did not cross-carpet to any political party,” Mr Ceesay disclosed, “I was expelled two years ago and that means I am no more a member of the APRC party unless and until their [APRC] decision is rescinded. Up till now that decision is not rescinded.”

He added that he cannot sit back and wait on the APRC party to rescind their decision for him to rejoin them. “As a young politician, I take politics as my career and I am very serious about it,” he said. “For me to fulfill my political aspirations, I decided to move on and joined the NRP so as to fulfil my political desire.”

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The former Lower Saloum parliamentarian said circumstances that led to his expulsion from the APRC has everything to do with the charges levied against him some years ago.

Pa Malick said he was also expelled from the public accounts committee and no reason was given for his expulsion.

According to him, the former government fought tooth and nail in an attempt to indict him on some bogus charges. “They conducted all kinds of investigations at all the institutions that I worked for to find out how I was managing those institutions. When they came to NEDI, an audit was conducted. And all of a sudden NEDI appeared before the PAC/PEC and I was expelled. Then they started accusing me of mismanagement, I have been accused of so many things, he said.

“Of course my case was totally politically motivated, when I started speaking my mind, especially when an article was published that ‘Honorable Ceesay, NAM for Lower Saloum criticizes parliament for not being effective and accountable’, that was where my problems with the ruling party started.

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Pa Malick reiterated the possibility of his participation in the upcoming parliamentary elections, saying the choice is left with his new NRP party and the people at his constituency.

“If they decide that I should contest, then I have no choice but to respect their wishes,” Mr Ceesay said.

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