The Draft Constitution is Ousainou Darboe’s premature baby. It is a UDP tailormade constitution. It may suffer a natural death in Parliament. Blame Ousainou Darboe if the Draft Constitution is not supported by three quarter of the House. His divisiveness, political adventurism, and optimism has landed The Gambia into such a political quagmire.
There was no need for a new constitution. The existing 1997 Constitution could have been revamped to meet international standards. The draconian provisions that Gambians deemed unnecessary, could have been expunged through Parliament.
The December 2016 political change was a moneymaking enterprise for Darboe, his party supporters, the mafia intellectuals, starving lawyers during Jammeh’s rule, his friends and loved ones.
It is no secret that the polarizing and dementia aging Darboe, was Gambia’s “De Factor President” during Barrow’s one-and-a-half-year rule. Darboe was calling the shots. He used the change to extend favors to his friends, loved ones, and supporters. Evidence of which, was the formation of the Janneh Commission. That Commission was headed by his fellow tax dodgers, and enablers of the former regime, that he (Darboe) sought to investigate.
With regards to the NIA nine case, Darboe, acting in concert with his errand boy disciple Baa Tambadou, the then Justice Minister, assembled a team of private lawyers and paid them over D48 million dalasis to prosecute the alleged killers of Solo Sandeng, a former official of his UDP party. That case is still pending in court.
The TRRC is also Darboe’s baby. We know the role he played in setting up that Commission. The Commission is headed by his fellow Basang brother Lamin Cise.
When the former Justice Minister Baa Tambadou initially tabled the bill for the formation of the new constitution, the likes of politician Halifa Sallah were concerned about the legality of such a move. If we are not mistaken, we heard Halifa saying that any move to replace the current constitution, could amount to treasonable act.
Sallah recommended for the 1997 constitution to be amended and developed to the expectations of the citizenry. The state, then under Darboe’s control never heeded to Sallah’s proposal.
The political fallout between ayatollah Darboe and his onetime perceived “son” Adama Barrow, has caused a firestorm (political rift in Parliament) when it comes to the passage of the Draft constitution in Parliament.
About eight UDP MPs have defected to Barrow’s camp. The NRP MPS are full time Barrow supporters. The loyalty of two GDC MPs remain questionable. Reports even have it that the two GDC MPs are likely going to vote against the draft constitution.
The APRC MPS wouldn’t vote in favor of the Draft. The PPP and PDOIS MPS might vote yes or no
For the draft constitution to be passed for possible referendum, the House needs three quarter of the total vote cast. It doesn’t look like that a two third vote could be secured.
The Barrow government would rather “wanna” see the rejection of the Draft, than its approval. The reason being, Barrow, has now realized that the draft was tailor made to cater for Darboe’s political interest.
The draft has some shortcomings. One, the draft doesn’t promote citizenship diversity. It is out to deny others citizenship.
The draft also limits religious secularity. The drafters wouldn’t agree to this assertion, but time will tell.
The Sharia provision had long term religious ramifications on our Christian brothers and sisters. If not amended, it would infringe on religious secularity.
D116 million dalasis has been spent on this draft constitution. Was it a waste? You tell me Gambia.
If Ousainou Darboe had known that there was going to be a fallout between him and Barrow, he would have called for the amendment of that two third provision in the 1997 constitution to enable a simply majority vote for the passage of the UDP tailored constitution. He did the same thing to extend the age limit for for position of VP and judges.
He used Fatoumatta Jallow Tambajang to pursue his set dream for the Vice Presidency. Once the VP’s age limit provision was amended, Ms. Tambajang was fired, and he (Darboe) walks in to occupy the portfolio of VP.
For Darboe, Gambia’s interest doesn’t matter. He only cares about himself, family, friends and supporters. He is Gambia’s most selfish and dishonest politician.
That said, Darboe is an overrated political armature. He is not as smart as widely perceived by his poorly informed followers.He should retire and give democracy and peace a chance. He is not a solution to Gambia’s economic and political problems. He is more of a problem.
Darboe is a toxic spent force politician. He is just wasting his time. He is not “gonna” make it.
God is on the side of The Gambia. The draft might not be passed.