Yaya Jammeh this, VP Njie Saidy that, Saul Bagie this, Coalition that, Alieu Momar Njie this, IGP Sonko that, President Adama Barrow this, Ousainou Darboe that, GDC this, Halifa Sallah that, Diaspora this, on the Ground that, Coup d’état this, the Army that and so on should now be a thing of the past in our country. Half-truths and intentional bad rumors should now be the thing of the past in our new Gambia.
All of the above insinuations exist simply because the PRESS is not free in the Gambia.
The only means to end all the above is to allow a FULL freedom of press in our country as in other countries especially in Senegal our neighbors. We should have many radios, many TV stations, and many newspapers free to broadcast the truths and give correct information to the public so that the rumor mongers loose their heinous jobs of spreading lies. We should STOP arresting and harassing journalists doing their job of informing the people about the truth. Only then can we maintain peace.
The journalists will verify the information before publishing them on their mediums. Media laws are here to protect the public officials, the journalists and the right to information. When press freedom exists in a country, there will be responsible journalism. Therefore Officials, politicians and the security apparatus should open up to the press to put the records straight so that people will know the truth and churn any rumors from rumor mongers. Rumors are scandalous and can damage or distort stories before the facts and the truths emerged.
As soon as free press is established rumors will STOP.
Granted dictators do not like freedom of the press simply because they want to hide the truth from the public. Now that democracy has come to our shores we should resort to responsible journalism and free press for the maintenance of democracy, peace, justice and rule of law and right to public information. We are the taxpayers as such we have the right to know.
I would finally encourage the youths and people of the Gambia to jealously guard the TOTAL freedom of the press. Only the free press can maintain democracy, justice, and peace in any country. You have sacrificed thru social media and online mediums to effect the change we needed in the Gambia as such we should insist and jealously maintain the right to information, honest and truthful information.
We are tired of rumor mongering for the past 22 years of Jammeh’s rule. The peace and stability of any country in this world rest on the shoulders of the freedom of the press we should therefore jealously guard this fundamental right to know if we want the Gambia NEVER to fall again in another dictatorship of a civilian form.
Yes some civilian governments can also turn to be civilian dictators and we should make sure it does not take place in our New Gambia.
Fear of the press should end NOW.
Written By Baboucarr Bojang.