Gambian President Adama Barrow has been bragging and boasting about the power might currently at his disposal, which he says, is more powerful than the one that his predecessor dictator Yahya Jammeh, was using for twenty-two years to silence his opponents. Mr. Barrow, was addressing a delegation of supporters from the West Coast region over the weekend. He contends that the ECOMIG forces currently on the ground, including The Gambian security forces have outnumbered Jammeh’s trigger happy forces, which were reputed to be indiscriminately maiming and killing Gambians at will for over a decade. Barrow cited the presence of Jammeh’s most feared National Intelligence Agency (NIA)—now renamed as the State Intelligence Services (SIS), The Gambia Armed Forces and the West African troops deployed in Banjul, under the command of ECOMIG, whom he says are here to protect his government.
“Gambians were afraid of Yahya Jammeh because of the power force that was behind him. Almost everyone was scared of him because of the security forces. Gambians were afraid of Jammeh because he had the police, the army, and the State Intelligence Agency (SIS). Today, I have more power than Jammeh because I have the police, the army, SIS, and ECOMIG forces here in The Gambia,” Barrow remarked.
It is not clear what must have occasioned Barrow’s veil threats against The Gambian population, but his statement came in the wake of an internal rift within the United Democratic Party (UDP). The UDP leadership had rallied support behind Ousainou Darboe, in the upcoming UDP Congress. They want Mr. Darboe to lead the party. Darboe is Gambia’s Vice President and Minister of Women’s Affairs.
Darboe presided over a UDP fundraising drive over the weekend ahead of the party’s Congress. Private companies, private citizens, and supporters of the UDP donated handsomely to the party.
The following day, Barrow received ten thousand residents of the West Coast Region, who paid a courtesy call on him to rally their support for Mr. Barrow. Barrow used the occasion to announce his intention to run for a second term in office. He even thrown shades at the UDP by saying that “this is my congress, and I am sure no congress would be bigger.”
Mr. Barrow is a former official of the United Democratic Party (UDP). He resigned from the party to contest the 2016 Presidential elections as an independent President. He was backed by seven opposition parties and one Independent Candidate.
The Cold War between Barrow’s team and the UDP is reaching its peak. Mr. Barrow is finalizing the process of registering a political party. Saturday is the scheduled date to finalize the talks.
Addressing his followers at the State House, Barrow said, his re-election for a second term, would be determined by the number of developmental projects and economic advancement he has accomplished during his first term in office. He said, that decision to re-elect him in office, would be determined by The Gambian electorate. He called for nation building and citizens to avoid divisive vices that will derail national development.
The rookie President also condescendingly took a swipe at the opposition. He called out the PPP for not been able to beat Jammeh in the past elections. He said so many efforts have been made by the opposition to dislodge Jammeh from power, but without much success. Therefore, he says, those eyeing for his seat, should have faith in God and understand that his Presidency was ordained by God.
Barrow also talked about folks, who are bent on derailing his Presidency. He said their goals is to bring him down, so that they can be voted into office. But he warned that The Gambian electorate are not fools to be hoodwinked by such selfish politicians.
Barrow has promised to construct 40 roads in the Kombos ahead of the OIC Summit. He also said similar projects will be launched in Basse later this month.
Barrow said his administration will not discriminate at communities because of their opposition to his rule. He referenced Foni, a predominantly opposition stronghold. He said his government will ensure that Foni benefits from present and future projects geared towards national development.
Written By Pa Nderry M’Bai