I read an article about O.J’s interview on West Coast Radio regarding 3 or 4 years for President Barrow. I agree entirely with O.J’s assessment. Even though it was still possible to change the constitution as part of the transition agenda to allow for elections after 3 years, we all agree that it is now too late to do that. Therefore the most logical and practical thing to do is to have elections after five years.
Now the fundamental question is not about 3 or 5 years anymore. It is about Barrow’s legal and moral right to stand again. In 2016, all those members of the coalition who had right to stand gave up that right to allow one man to stand on the agreement that he will not stand again to challenge them in the next election. His mandate is to implement the transition agenda and and create a level playing field for free and fair elections and then retire honorably. As incumbent, if he wants to stand in the next elections, the reform agenda will not address Gambia’s problems but rather the political aspirations of the incumbent. Jammeh was entrenched in power because of bad laws, bad security set-up and bad civil service set-up. So far there are no changes in these sectors. What does that tell us. President barrow should focus on genuine reform and as a matter of urgency institute radical changes in his Government by bringing in qualified technocrats to do the job and do away with the sycophants that surround him for their own selfish interest. President barrow still has an opportunity to go down positively in history but he also face the risk of going the other way. Whether he stays for 3, 5, 10 or 15 years, he must go one day. So the issue is not whether he will go but how he goes and what legacy one leaves behind.
I think the likes of OJ should address the question of whether President barrow should contest the next elections or not. The question is not 3 or 5 years.
But even if we assume that it is 5 years we all must ensure that the reform agenda is completed. And if we assume that he will stand again, we must all ensure that the reform agenda is complete and represent the aspirations of the Gambian people and not the political aspirations of the incumbent.
We all know that in 2016 if all party leaders exercised their rights to stand, Jammeh would have still been here and the likes of barrow and his colleagues could have been in jail or even face worst things. Therefore the ultimate sacrifice made by Khalifa, OJ, Amat, and the rest to all Barrow to stand on their behalf, should be met by the same sacrifice by Barrow not to challenge them in 2021 by using all the advantages of incumbency. The whole World is watching and do on to others as you would like others to do on to you.
Thank you Pa
From an Insider.