Dear Dr Jallow,
I would like to begin my reply to your article titled above with a serious concern on how you falsely and hypocritically pretended not to defend Mr Bah’s despicable remarks about his political opponents in your disclaimer despite the fact that you have demonstrated complete support and endorsement for his derogatory comments in your article.
First you stated that:
“ I am not defending Honorable Bah on his statement. However, there is truth to his statement and that the science of facts demands that men and women of conscience reason and start a debate on this critical issue to understand the historical genesis behind the stigmatization and marginalization against the Fula tribe all geared to advance national unity and healing, amid our fractured and damaged democracy”.
What historical evidence existed in The Gambia in the past or currently what evidence do you have to suggest that Fulas are discriminated or marginalized since our independence? Since the theme of your article was discrimination , marginalization and stigmatization. I have asked the above question for you to provide answers to Gambian people in your next reply since you did not provide any evidence in your initial article.
If you are a rational scientific thinker and you truly understand evidence-based presentation to make a case in support of Mr Bah’s so called factual statements as you suggested then you should have presented your rationals to defend Mr Bah’s tribal vitriol but you do not present any factual evidence in your entire article. The article you presented was based on implicit tribal bias and assumptions without any factual evidence to substantiate your claim that Fulas are marginalized and discriminated in The Gambia as suggested By tribalist leader , Mr Bah . There was no studies or evidence to reference your claim. Since you failed to state evidence to substantiate your claim on how, why , when and where in The Gambia Fulas are discriminated against and in what capacity, I will focus on Mr Bah’s tribal vitriol.
First I will categorically states that you are clearly defending Mr Bah’s tribal vitriol because you believe that there are facts in his tribal identity politics which “warned Gambian Fulas against voting for the “Rats” implying that it would bring suffering to Gambian Fulas”.
Mr Bah’s statement above is not only a lie but also very dangerous for a political leader to speak like that in public domain. There is no factual evidence to suggest that voting for UDP would bring suffering to Fulas in the country. His statements are falsely construed to encourage identity politics based on fear tactics and deception. It is only those with myopic ethnic or tribalistic view that would consider Mr Bah’s ill- informed statements or jargons as factual evidence when he called his political opponents as Rats and encouraged identity politics. Insulting political opponents by calling them degrading names have set many African countries on fire. The civil wars that happened in Sierra Leaon and Ruwanda are classic examples where politicians incited tribal vitriol resulting to millions been killed. You must understand that Amat Bah was speaking to group of supporters and his main objective was to incite fear and cynicism amongst his tribe members about perceived opponents . Therefore, as a state minister, he should have been responsible to carefully select his words about how he speaks in public . There is also no evidence to indicate that the Fulas in The Gambia are discriminated or marginalized based on Mr Bah’s allegations against immigration officials. Mr Bah’s statement was not only discriminatory but also condescending against his political opponents . His categorization of the UDP supporters as Rats was a very distasteful and evil implicit bias he demonstrated in the country. This must be condemned by all civilized citizens who cares about our peaceful coexistence and stability.
Please come up with evidence to substantiate your false statements that Fulas are discriminated or marginalized based on National resources allocation , development efforts or any way possible. In fact, looking at the leadership of all the political parties in the country, Fulas are the leading political figures in all the major political parties and many leading pubic institutions. In The Gambia, Fulas have always enjoy their fair share of national cake.
In your article you also Stated that :
“What would the demand for the resignation and sacking of a public official benefit us, if the laid bare contentious issue continues to be ignored by the majority”?
Dr Jalow, Mr Bah’s tribal vitriol is not a contentious issue during this difficult time of our history. Mr Bah’s and his boss should have focused their attention, time and energy on “critical issues surrounding youth unemployment, the economy amid COVID-19M and post-COVID, land disputes, corruption, nepotism, private-public policies mismatched, failed health service delivery, damaged and politicized press, rising theft, and burglaries, insecurity, and tribalism” affecting all Gambians. Amat Bah failed to talk about these critical issues but engage in identity politics which is detrimental to our economic development and peaceful coexistence. Dr Jallow, you are clearly missing the points why people are calling him to resign or be sacked because his statements doesn’t help the country’s political healing and stability. It was simply discriminatory and was based on fear tactics to create more divisions and serve and secure his selfish political interest and President Adama Barrow’s dictatorial tendencies . Politicians Like Mr Bah has nothing to offer to Gambian people but division and hateful tribal vitriol and self- proclaimed victimization.
The current government He is serving , Mr Bah did not campaign for President Adama Barrow during 2016 presidential election. When patriotic citizens put their lives on the line to liberate the country from military dictatorship Mr Bah left the country because he was looking for his selfish interest elsewhere. The various reports later surfaced which indicated that Mr Bah was in fact negotiating with the former President Jammeh to be appointed as Vice President during the political impasse. This clearly tell us Mr Bah’s never care about the Fulas particularly people like Tumane Jallow who sacrificed their life for the country and those who voted to change the despicable political climate at the time despite the fact that he is now calling on them to engage in identity politics. Mr Amat Bah has spend his entire political life on identity politics which is why he won elections in the area where there are predominantly Fula populations. Politicians with progressive ideas have done well in all parts of the country. If The majority Mandinkas are tribalistic as some of you self serving political opportunists are suggesting, then The former President Yaya Jammeh and Adama Barrow would have never been elected as president. Majority of citizens never have any tribal vitriol and do not engage in identity politics. It was this reason that our country is relative peaceful compare to many African countries where identity and tribal politics caused catastrophic economic and human rights violations. The founding father of The Gambia , a mandinka man whether you like it or not was the most tolerant leader the country would ever see if you compare him to incompetent leaders like Barrow. Sir Dawda Jawara’s tolerance and inclusive political leadership has set the foundation and lasting effects for our country’s relative peace and stability. Imagine if Amat Bah was the founding father of The Gambia, he would have discriminated against majority of citizens just like the former President Yaya Jammeh has created tribalism and made policies based on tribal interest . Under Sir Dawda Jawara , Majority of senior government officials are non-Mandinkas but Under the former President Jammeh’s watch we have seen tribalism reached highest level. Remarkably, the relative peaceful nature of the majority, the coalition of citizens worked together to rescue the country. Mr Amat and his ink in the cabinet would want to continue discriminatory policies based on tribal politics to suit their agenda. For those who don’t get memo , the former President Jammeh was the last President who would successfully used tribal identity politics to sustain himself in power. This is the lesson Dr Jallow you must understand in your false argument of supporting Mr Bah’s tribal vitriol. The Gambia will always be ruled by A Leader who has broad support of coalition of citizens. Adama Barrow was supported by broad based citizens, all these stupid rhetorics we are hearing about his tribe was concealed and never mentioned . Now that he is the president, tribalists in his inner circle are promoting their myopic tribal agenda to sustain him in power. For the rest of your article, I think your attack on innocent journalists in the country on this issue is simply baseless and just shifting of blame or displacement of blame.
On the lighter note , I think your article do not meet the requirements of your standard of education, I hope next time you give it to your former faculty head to revise and make adjustment so that there could be evidence-based presentation to convince people who are objective in their view to make critical informed decision.
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