UDP Decision Is More Supreme Than Mine-Lawyer Darboe
Ousainou Darboe, leader of the United Democratic Party (UDP), has disclosed that decisions reached by the party supersedes his personal stance as far as national issues are concerned. Arguing that if the party takes the decision for President Barrow to adhere to the three year promise and step down in December, he has no power to overrule that decision made by the UDP.
Darboe made this statement at a press conference hosted by the United Democratic Party (UDP) where the party called on President Adama Barrow to surrender the affairs of the country as agreed by Coalition 2016 Stakeholders.
Coalition 2016 is composed of eight opposition political parties including one independent candidate. The creation of the coalition led to the defeat of President Yahya Jammeh in the 2016 presidential election, bringing an end to Jammeh’s 22 year rule.
“This is the first time UDP as a party is making a statement on this issue and the party’s decision is more supreme than my personal decision. It took three days for the party to arrive at this decision because there were a lot of debate among us (executives) before we arrived at this decision and in any case, I, Ousainou Darboe cannot overrule the decision of the party”, Darboe explained.
According to Darboe, his personal views may differ from the statement made by the party, adding that this is the first time UDP has come out to make a statement to call on President Barrow to respect the will of the people as agreed by the Coalition 2016.
The UDP party leader revealed at the press conference that when he proposed Dr. Isatou Touray as an individual to nominate as the party’s flag-bearer it was President Barrow himself who first challenged his decision, questioning whether it was only Ousainou who can make a decision in UDP.
“President Barrow’s questioning of whether I am the only one to make decisions shows that, I, Ousainou Darboe cannot dictate the party on the selection of a Presidential flag-bearer. I cannot dictate the party and I cannot dictate the party to adopt my position at all,” Darboe emphatically stated.
Darboe said the pending question that needs to be addressed is whether President Barrow will step-down by December and organize a fresh election as agreed by the Coalition 2016 Stakeholders, adding that UDP as a party is urging President Barrow to respect this agreement.
“Let me say that one character of a good leader is adhering, respecting and promises you made are fulfilled. For me any leader that does not respect his promises to the people is deceitful and I don’t think Gambia wants any leader that is deceitful, I think Gambia wants leaders that will respect and fulfill promises that they made irrespective of what the consequences are,” Darboe.
Darboe said UDP may consider it necessary to change their current position if President Adama Barrow supposedly called for a national dialogue. Adding that if there is a national dialogue and reasonable suggestions comes in a responsible manner UDP may take part in the discourse.
Further responding to questions, the UDP party leader said the impact of a political party can only be felt when it is in power, promising that when UDP comes into power it will deliver the “New Gambia” that was promised.
He made references to the quality of leadership demonstrated by currently elected UDP mayors and chairmen across the country, an indication that a UDP elected President will do what is expected of him or her from Gambians.