Friday, April 12, 2024

OPINION: Senegal Covered in a Cloud of Uncertainty

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By: Musa Bassadi Jawara

Presidential elections were scheduled to take place this Sunday, February 25, 2024, in Senegal. A presidential decree and act of the National Assembly, placed in the dustbin of history, the February 25, democratic event. Reasons advanced by the executive and legislature for the cancellation are sketchy and duplicitous. If anything, it’s a classical

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case of sheer political opportunism and skullduggery.

The Constitutional Council, last Thursday, February 15, 2024, rejected both the presidential decree and the National Assembly’s set date of December 15, 2024, for the presidential elections. Furthermore, the justices licensed the competent authorities to choose a date expeditiously within the mandated term of the current president. One week has elapsed without tangible action, brinkmanship has claimed the order of the day while the entire political, social and economic climate rest on the edge of the precipice.

From my vantage standpoint and observing from afar, President Macky Sall does not have good options to choose from and he’s very circumspect. I attach two quotes herewith for President Sall to seek counsel from, thus:

“For forms of government let fools contest; whatever is best administered is best.” — Alexander Pope.

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“The government you elect is the government you deserve.” — Thomas Jefferson.

In the final analysis President Sall, it’s the people of Senegal’s inalienable right to choose who to entrust for the stewardship of their nation and this is non-negotiable.

President Sall, not too long ago when similar precipice conditions prevailed in my country, The Gambia, you intervened with military force and restored freedom and decency to your neighbour This was magnanimous and laudable. And, your Excellency President Macky Sall, “What’s sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander.” You must again stand for democratic principles and ideals!

You must now be magnanimous in the moribund period of your administration and demonstrate class acts of statesmanship and do the right thing in the spirit of humankind. Abraham Lincoln’s second inaugural address captured it well: “With malice toward none with charity for all.”

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President Sall, when we peel away the mumbo Jumbo, you have performed a virtuous performance in office and history will be kind to you. It’s my fervent belief and conviction that your chances of returning to the presidency in future are excellent and you must do the right thing by leaving. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “The time is always right to do what’s right.”

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