It’s electioneering year in The Gambia. Gambia’s First Lady, who hardly coexists with the locals (electorates), has all of a sudden started trying to blend in and pretending to be a philanthropist. She is cozying with our voters. She is asking them to vote for her liability, corrupt and failed husband Yahya Jammeh. She has overnight become dictator Yahya Jammeh’s campaign in chief.
Zeinab Jammeh, is not the type of First Lady, who is sensitive to the plight of Gambians—more importantly the girl child. She has been preoccupied pursuing financial and material world. She marries this knucklehead criminal calling himself a President, largely for her own personal aggrandizement. She doesn’t care about Gambia’s development. If she does, she wouldn’t be flying around the world like a bird, at the expense of the impoverished taxpayers’ money.
Now that we have barely two months before the elections, Zeinab Jammeh wants to dress Gambian; acts Gambian; embraces Gambian culture; even though she doesn’t believe in anything Gambian. She is desperately trying to fit in. Her confused husband is telling her that in order for Gambians to accord them another five years mandate, she should curtail her endless overseas trips and stay home and be the face of his campaign for 2016.
Zeinab Jammeh, has no impact on The Gambian electorate. For her to be able to canvass votes for her lazy husband, she needs to establish a serious relationship with the voters. Unfortunately, Zeinab, cannot resonate with the average Gambian voter. This is largely due to her communication deficiencies. She cannot even speak Jammeh’s own local dialect Jolla—not to mention Mandinka, Wolof, and Fulani.
Serious First Ladies around the world would spearhead projects that will uplift the living standard of the poor and the needy. But in the case of Gambia’s Zeinab Souma Jammeh, she is busy spending vacations in the United States, France, Morocco, and elsewhere around the world. She is a high maintenance First Lady. She spent a lot of money on body makeups; perfumes; high end restaurants; and other social entertainments.
True, Zeinab Jammeh, has launched a so called Foundation with her corrupt husband Yahya Jammeh. The said Foundation is being managed by one of Jammeh’s economic surrogates in the person of Fatou Mass Jobe. They said the Foundation is meant to help Gambian children.
Funnily, we are yet to be told where the source of the monies being donated to the purported Foundation is coming from. We are also yet to see any serious project in terms of empowering or bailing out Gambian children from poverty from the said Foundation. The Foundation hasn’t publish its annual income or expenditure on children either.
In the absence of accountability, transparency, and probity, Gambians would be left with no alternative, but to speculate about the veracity of the Jammehs claims that the Foundation is here to help Gambian children. The onus lies on the Jammehs to alley public fear about the credibility of the purported Foundation.
Having said that, it is imperative to note that Yahya Jammeh lacks the legitimacy to rule The Gambia. Jammeh also lacks the legitimacy to seek for another five year mandate. Our argument has been premised on Jammeh’s failed policies and leadership.
Over the years, Jammeh has proven to be a lame duck corrupt dictator. Instead of working towards elevating poverty; unemployment; providing skill training for our failing school leavers; revamping the collapsed economy, and infrastructure; agriculture; educational sectors; and strengthening our fragile democratic institutions, Jammeh has been preoccupied making money for himself and his family at the detriment of our nation.
Given the dire political and economic stakes at hand, The Gambian opposition should set aside their egos, political ideologies and interest and come together to bailout the country from Jammeh’s misrule. Failure of which, The Gambia risked descending into a full blown failed state. Another five years of Jammeh, spells doom for our nation. Jammeh must go! We rest our case.
Written By Pa Nderry M’Bai