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OPINION: Banjul took their begging bowl to Barrow
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OPINION: Banjul took their begging bowl to Barrow

I derive no pleasure in writing this as Banjul is very close to me but is about time for the islanders to be told some home truths.

I read with disgust that some transactional political dinosaurs together with the rejuvenated mafia and new emerging politicians went to State House to beg President Barrow for a bigger slice of the national cake and acceleration of developmental projects being worked on in the city.

This is shameful, to say the least and oddly enough, most of them do not even live there anymore. Adama barrow had lived and worked in Banjul for many years and during that time he had never constructed a single road or erect street lights. And to be fair, he was never asked to. Why now? Just because he is the President doesn’t mean that he owns government accounts and assets.

Banjul, being the seat of power, a place where Gambian civilisation supposedly begins should know better that they shouldn’t beg for development. And the President is doing them no favours by erecting few street lights or rehabilitating their battered roads. It is their taxes and loans taken on their behalf, which their children and grandchildren will pay for, that are being used.

Opinion 2

A city that arguably produced more millionaires than any other and a pool of highly educated people shouldn’t reduce themselves to political pawns available to the highest bidder.

Banjulians are notoriously reputed for not getting involved in the heavy lifting but will show up first for their undeserved share once victory is attained. Barrow once made reference to it, saying they had to transport people from the provinces to attend court hearings of UDP executive whilst Banjulians couldn’t be bothered to show up.

During the struggle for independence, they were disinterested and very happy with the status quo. It was the patriotic sons and daughters of the Protectorate who formed Protectorate People’s Party (PPP) with the primary objective of attaining self-rule.

Opinion 3

Banjulians initially aligned themselves with Pierre Sarr Njie’s United Party (UP) as founding members. They abandoned him as soon as he lost the general election and crossed over to Sir Dawda Jawara’s gravy train. They gave Jawara a wife and the State House became their farmyard. They later attempted, and partly succeeded, in hijacking the PPP from the original members whom they pushed to the fringes.

The position of Secretary General and Head of the Civil Service became eternally (almost) theirs so they can absorb their school-leaving offspring into the public sector. Jawara was their Jawara until Jammeh came. They tried the same trick with him without success. Jammeh was a wise fool.

When I saw placards – ‘An attack on Barrow is an attack on Banjul’ and ‘Barrow is our Barrow’; I said to myself the latter should be rephrased to “Barrow is our Barrow as far as he is the President and winning elections”.

Opinion 4

I do know if they can abandon one of their own PS. Njie after defeats to Jawara, doing same to Barrow would be much easier and quicker. They wailed ‘Banjul always go with the ruling party’ and ‘Fou Toy Nju Tak.’ This appears opportunistic, lack of loyalty, and people incapable of stringing together anything of note without ‘woyaning’ sitting Presidents.

The young generation should be taught hard graft pays. Many communities around the country are building schools, recreational centres, mosques/churches for themselves without ado.

Saul Sarr


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