Africa-Press – Gambia. PDOIS leader Halifa Sallah has warned President Adama Barrow to behave or else the party will not spare him if he attempts to undermine any of its members in the future.
Reacting to the president’s comments that PDOIS’ Sidia Jatta should retire just as his contemporaries have done in a Star FM interview to be aired today, Halifa Sallah said: “You (Barrow) should behave and allow those who love their country to concentrate and say important things that will be digested by the citizens, so that we know the difficulties the country is faced with for us to imploy means to avoid setting the country on fire in the next five years. For that to happen, we need a president who is contented, someone who will not offend people or make comments that will undermine his citizens.”
Sallah argued that “a head of state needs three things; education, empathy and honesty to be able to lead.” “But I want to make it clear that no one will undermine PDOIS and go scot-free. We are the ones who put up Sidia Jatta as our candidate. Who is he (Barrow) to say he should not stand? That is not his job but you see, if you go to an extent that you don’t know who entrusted you the power you have, you make it yours. You are basically telling us you don’t want MPs who speak the truth at the National Assembly,” Sallah said.
The former Serekunda National Assembly member said he decided to campaign for PDOIS candidates because the voters should be given a chance to hear from their candidates to make informed choices.
“But to my surprise, Barrow is going round the country campaigning when the people of Foni Kansala are fleeing their homes for safety because of the Casamance conflict. I don’t even know what on earth Barrow was thinking when he was going on a country tour when his citizens were suffering. You cannot even call an emergency cabinet meeting to discuss the country’s security challenges but you can go and start engaging in veiled criticism,” Sallah chastised. The veteran politician said the president being mandated by over 400, 000 of Gambian voters should be contented.
“We all know what Sidia Jatta has done in this country but Barrow wants to undermine him. We all know why we are saying that a president should not go beyond two terms. It is because it is a place of power where you can easily change to be a king but a lawmaker can never be a king because you are just one among 57 people. So, your that position cannot make you command or force anyone to do something. This is why if you go to America, their legislators have all sorts of age brackets, so everyone who has the ability and means should be given the opportunity if he or she asks for it.
“So, Barrow is misleading the public because my retirement is based on the fact that I wanted to be president but the people refused to give me the opportunity to lead them. I decided to retire because I cannot force them to do what I want but I didn’t retire because I cannot perform or my age. I want the people to understand that and they should also know that if all capable ones are voted out, then the legislative house will crumble,” he added.