Four Years Of Scandals, Betrayals And Plunder!
Today, 19 January 2021 is the fourth anniversary of this Government. A few days ago, Pres. Adama Barrow said he will soon disclose the names of some opposition politicians who were seeking to sell the Gambia to foreign investors. Yet on the eve of his fourth anniversary, Malagen online newspaper has published an incontrovertible report of how the Gambia is actually being sold right from the State House, under his watch!
If it is consistently known for anything, it is the constant incidences of scandals, betrayals and plunder that it has brought on Mother Gambia almost on a weekly basis for the past 48 months, with impunity.
The Barrow Administration will surely be remembered by the history books as the most corrupt and the most inefficient regime in modern Gambia. From the long list of anonymous donors to dubious contracts and phoney relationships with both crooked local and foreign ‘investors’ to blatant plunder of public funds, this Government has demonstrated that it does not have the slightest interest of the people of the Gambia at heart. Rather what Barrow has clearly shown is that he is willing and ready to perpetuate himself in power until the cows come home!
On 19 January 2017, as Barrow took the oath of office in Dakar, many Gambians shed tears of joy mixed with so much grief and relief knowing full well the fear, mayhem and destruction that was visited upon our lives for 22 years. For some, January 17 marked the opening of the door to re-enter their motherland after being exiled for years. For others, it is the day that they could open their mouths in order to release what is in their hearts and minds.
In essence, it was a day that marked the beginning of the restoration of our humanity, sovereignty and dignity as citizens of this beautiful land of ours. For that matter, all looked up to Adama Barrow with so much hope and expectation to deliver this country out of a culture of tyranny, division and discrimination into an era of democracy, good governance and protection of human rights.
But four years down the line, it is an understatement to say Adama Barrow has betrayed Gambians. In fact, it won’t be an overstatement to claim that Adama Barrow killed and buried the Gambia. By refusing to effect the necessary and comprehensive system change, but maintaining the same institutions and their leadership and key personnel as before, it meant that Barrow effectively sustained the conditions of Dictatorship without the claws of that evil system. For the past four years, both the civil service and the security sector institutions remained effectively as they were during the evil regime of Yaya Jammeh.
And this is where concern must be raised. Where corruption is left to thrive and accountability is disregarded as Barrow has encouraged, sooner or later human rights becomes the causality. All human rights violations are founded on and fuelled by corruption. Check any regime in the history of the world that is notorious for human rights violations, one will find at its core lies the character of corruption: i.e., the quest for material wealth, position and power by any means necessary. This is why Gambians must be highly worried that the character of this Government is the insatiable widespread struggle among its officers for undeserved wealth, position and power.
The first manifestation of corruption is the insatiable thirst of Barrow to insist on staying in power by any means. It is for this reason that all Gambians must be highly concerned that Pres. Barrow, who came on the promise of a three-year transitional agenda now seeks not only the full five-year constitutional term but is also seeking to go beyond 10 years in office. For that matter, he has embraced all manner of people and allowed all sorts of malpractices to pass while completely disregarding accountability in his Government. It is such unbridled desire for self-perpetuation in power that lays the foundation for tyranny in any society. This is all the more reason why Gambians must ensure that Barrow does not go beyond 2021 so that that hunger for power which has now consumed him is cut and buried for good.
When a leader is obsessed with power then it can fall for anything! This is where the Malagen story on foreign investors is an instructive story that exposes a State that does not only lack, but also cares less for sacred democratic and republican values and standards. One should not only be angered by the fact that this Government is selling our country to foreign crooks, but that it is in fact selling our land to poor and decrepit foreign rascals, womanizers, and scumbags who cannot help even themselves much more the Gambia!
But above all, it shows a State that is so inefficient, reckless and careless that it cannot even identify cheap rascals such that it would allow our State House and our Presidency, hence our collective power and sovereignty to be bastardized by the scum of the earth in the name of foreign investment! Scandalous.
What is our National Assembly doing about the state of the country? What are our political parties doing about the state of the country? What are our political parties and NAMs doing to contain and confine this Government to the dictates of our laws? For the civil society, it is important to report that today the Supreme Court will begin hearing in a suit filed by Gambia Participates and Center for Research and Policy Development against the Government and the National Assembly over the constitutionality of allocating 54.4 million dalasi to the National Assembly.
It is unfortunate that today is passing off without any manifestation of rage by the populace. If it were in another country, political parties, civil society and ordinary citizens would have assembled in the centre of the capital city to show their utter displeasure and disappointment at the poor performance and gross misconduct of this Government. Today should have been a day when our people should have expressed, in no uncertain terms to the President that we are not satisfied with his delivery. After four years in office, not only has the cost of living increased while delivery of basic social services weakened but also the incidence of corruption and abuse of office have become the order of the day while basic checks and balances continue to be flouted with impunity.
Therefore, on this sad day of the fourth anniversary of this Government, I hereby call on the National Assembly, political parties and CSOs, and indeed all citizens to stand up to demand justice and accountability. There have been uncountable human rights violations, numerous constitutional violations, blatant acts of corruption and abuse of office perpetrated by the President and a series of public officials and institutions for which there have been no justice and accountability. By letting these abuses to perpetuate into impunity, rest assured we are delivering our country back into Dictatorship sooner than later.
For The Gambia Our Homeland
LinkedIn: Madi Jobarteh
Phone: +220 9995093