On a day the Diplomatic Passport scandal took a new twist, a week when President Barrow refused to go to the National Assembly for the second time to answer questions from NAMs, a month when President Barrow shielded his chums and punished others for committing the same offence, Team Bakary Badjie find it fitting to pay Mr President a visit and declared their unwavering support for his agenda.
Who would’ve thought? On a beautiful Saturday afternoon; the sun is out, blue sky above and southwesterly breeze, Team Bakary Badjie quietly assembled and sneaked into State House (probably through the backdoor) for a scheduled meeting with the President.
After which I thought the pleasure should be theirs, so I was expecting them to be drooling all over Facebook about it, but no. It was the State House media team who broke the news on their Facebook page that’s when we got to know about it.
The concerning line was “Team Bakary Badjie declares unconditional support for the Barrow agenda”. Nothing wrong with individuals, organizations or movements visiting their President, but the purpose and timing, in this case, was wrong. This time last year, Team Bakary was the enemy of the UDP (this was when both Barrow and Darboe were working as a unit). Bakary was caricatured and called all sorts of derogatory names in the book. Division and now a divorce of former UDP allies were confirmed back in March 2019.
Team Bakary’s action appeared as taking sides in a duel that have nothing to do with them. Barrow’s agenda as we were told by his aides at various rallies in his presence, is for him to hang on to power for at least 15 years. So, is this what Team Bakary is in support of? Or were they at the State House to look for future roles in government?
Although most of them are gainfully employed or self-employed and you wouldn’t expect them to seize the opportunity to be auditioning for jobs, but hey that’s new Gambia for you.
Barrow’s everyday actions point to a desperate man clinging on to power. That’s why on weekly basis Presidential aides Dodou Sanno and Lamin Cham are looking out for communities to transport to the State House for a silly chatter.
Over the weekend, Team Bakary became their latest victim. Seedy Njie, Pa Malick Ceesay and Lamin Cham’s fingerprints are all over this facade.
President Barrow is not a reliable person to ally with. During the 2016 Presidential campaign, Barrow was always with OJ Jallow and Halifa Sallah whilst Mai Ahmad Fatty was stationed in Wuli and Hamat Bah shuttling between Senegal and Guinea Conakry. Upon assuming office, he relegated Halifa, sidelined OJ and the three amigos (Ousainou Darboe, Mai Ahmad Fatty & Hamat Bah) became his buddies. His team within a team keep changing since then.
I was told Team Bakary Badjie favoured a full five-year mandate as opposed to the three-year coalition agreement which was the central point of the meeting, but alas, Mrs Bojang twisted it to suit her agenda.
Bakary Badjie should come out and clarify his team’s visit to the Presidency.
By Saul Sarr