By: Ousainou Mbenga
THE GENUINE STRUGGLE CONTINUES!
The mighty Gambian voters and their “diaspora” allies will lick their wounds and live to fight another day. For if it wasn’t for the the diaspora Henry Gomez and Mai Ahmed Fatty will not have been included in the coalition. But once included, they had to make DEMANDS as did all other parties. But we, the “diaspora” with unprecedented political naivety assumed we were dealing with honest and scrupulous partners in the STRUGGLE to flick Jammeh and his APRC over the cliff. A fatal blunder it was.
I can fully remember raising the alarm to make our DEMANDS known to the coalition before the cement was poured for the concrete foundation of the coalition but it was met with adverse naivety that it was the wrong timing. Many thought it would have been offensive or potentially disrupt the fragile coalition. Yet others championed patience but the fatal blow was that, upon victory, the coalition will “do the right thing”. And yes, they sure enough did the right thing by excluding us with a blatant snobbish attitude. In fact the “diaspora” is the enemy as oppose to the APRC vermin they have befriended and in bed with.The frequent volume of calls before and during campaign abruptly ended on December 2, 2016, onwards. So, comrades, brothers and sisters be careful who you coalition with next time around.
Here is what we should have demanded of the coalition, in my view:
1) Voting rights of Gambians in the “diaspora”. Never mind the lame excuse of its too expensive and that government cannot afford it.
2) Revocation of the outrageous residency requirement to run for office.
3) Representation in the government and National Assembly.
4) Immediate revocation of the draconian Jammeh laws such as the “idemnity act” and “public order act”
It is my strong believe that had we positioned ourselves to become functional representative of the 2016 coalition government in collaboration with the few genuine forces in the coalition, activists, honest intellectuals and indeed the support of the mighty masses, the current madness would have been vigorously challenged and at the least a path charted towards national advancement not selfish personal gains.
Comrades, brothers and sisters, its “Not yet UHURU”, meaning not yet FREEDOM. We didn’t kick Jammeh’s ass out just to remain “suffering peacefully”. To hell with “meaningless peace” and our “new found democracy” which Barrow and his “enablers”, the likes of General Kinteh are worried that it is being abused. No one handed us the long fought victory but the mighty Gambian people. If there are any abuses it is Barrow / UDP regime and its enablers, the police, army and security forces that attempt to violate our democratic rights as was arrogantly displayed during the “Occupywestfield and “Daffadoy” peaceful protests. Barrow / UDP are digging their heels to entrench themselves similar to what Jammeh did but in a shorter period of time. It comes with a sigh of relief to hear people who defended the Barrow / UDP regime expressing how impossible it is to defend the reckless actions of this government. From 2014 – 2016 all eyes were on the Gambia in our relentless fight against tyranny. After 22 years of blood, sweat and tears, we are now more than ever determined to lead the genuine struggle to its logical conclusion; power in the hands of the Gambian people.
But we must be willing to cultivate a revolutionary leadership that is in opposition to neocolonialism and steeped in revolutionary politics. Some reactionaries think revolutionary politics is beyond the grasp of the our downtrodden masses but they are sadly mistaken. The vast majority of our people are disgustingly fed up with “politics as usual”, the politics that the Barrow / UDP regime is operating under.
NO FIVE YEARS FOR BARROW! RESPECT THE MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING