Has the arrogant former SG now received good lessons on how to behave appropriately? Or has the dry ‘Mighty Pen’ been refilled with new ink? It seems when the sacrificial cow stopped producing milk for his master, the only place left now is to take it to the abattoir. Since his appointment as director general of GRTS, hardly a week passes by without being fascinated by some kind of manufactured stories on Momodou Sabally’s official engagements aired on prime time news both in the Observer newspaper and on the television news which was a rarity during the time of his predecessors who were trained seasoned journalists being at the helm of the state broadcaster.
If anything that Mr. Sabally does functionally as DG is aired as national news then how about the daily engagements of DGs in other public or government institutions carrying out similar national functions in fulfillment of their mandate? The signing of an agreement with Xinhua News Agency yesterday as reported again on the GRTS news without the presence of any GRTS board member or even a representation from the Information ministry is an indication of how powerful has the present DG and Editor-in-chief of the Observer company now become.
In broadcasting a fine line is drawn between what is ‘national’ and not national news for public consumption. Until Momodou Sabally realized that both GRTS and the Daily Observer are propaganda tools for the exclusive use of one person and one person only, he will soon suffer the same fate that made the ink for his ‘mighty pen’ to run dry in 2014.
In a television broadcast aired on GRTS on July 7th, 2014 the day Momodou Sabally got fired, Yaya Jammeh issued a statement on GRTS that evening and quote, “You cannot be more president than the president himself, you cannot be more Muslim than the Holy Prophet(SAW) and so I see no reason why anybody would see his or her appointment as a license to show arrogance and bluff..,” unquote.
Many people believed that Jammeh was alluding to Sabally’s infantile and disgusting arrogance towards his cabinet colleagues, which is now so manifested in his interactions with the able and highly trained staff at the GRTS.
Exercising caution especially with the realization that GRTS had been in existence well before Sabally completed his university education in mathematics (not even journalism or mass communications courses that are quite relevant to run the GRTS), the frequent externalization of his daily tasks in the public domain only to impress the president is really uncalled for and unnecessary.
Gambians in the diaspora whom he once described as “bad and irresponsible citizens tarnishing the image of the Gambia in the diaspora,” were deeply concerned following his arrests and detention at the NIA. Even the editor of the Freedom Newspaper wrote an editorial “Free Momodou Sabally Now!” on August 21st, 2016 to add his voice in the campaign to release him from the NIA.
Many of us who attended the burial of his late mother of blessed memory in 2015 still believed that his sacking and subsequent arrests must have aggravated whatever sickness that took the old woman to her grave. How can Sabally today turn around and assumed the new role of being the image setter and mouthpiece of the Jammehs forgetting the harassment, detention and mayhem that he suffered walking under the sunny beaches of Kololi with small water bottle in his hand always self-talking making some to think that he was getting crazy.
How some people can easily become forgetful in a country full of greedy opportunists bits my imagination. It is time to stop the window-dressing as well as the regular propaganda drama at the GRTS and start running that institution in a professional manner putting the interest of all Gambians at heart. Whether you are an APRC bigwig or an opposition party member, GRTS belongs to the public. As Bill Gates once said, “It is fine to celebrate success but it is more important to heed the lessons of failures.” Think seriously about it.
Concerned Gambian (From Lamin)