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City of Banjul
Saturday, June 19, 2021

A call to duty

Dear editor,

It is indeed unfortunate that the voter turnout in the recent National Assembly Election is reported to have been under 50%. This is indeed worrying, to say the least. It shows that many citizens choose to be passive for whatever reason.

Granted, it is almost next to impossible to have a 100% voter turnout; but, considering the struggle the Gambia has gone through of recent to oust the regime that almost suffocated us, one would have expected that Gambians would take it upon themselves to come out in their large numbers to vote.

The founding father of trade unionism in the Gambia, of journalism, indeed of the fight for independence, Edward Francis Small, famously said, ‘No Taxation Without Representation’. At the time, people paid taxes to government whereas they were not allowed to have representatives in the legislature which disbursed their taxes. He, and many other patriotic Gambians, fought this until we attained independence. That means, we became our own rulers, not ruled by a foreign power. We adapted a system of government which allowed us to have a say in as to who should represent us. Isn’t it ironic that now we have the right to vote and be represented and we are taking it for granted?

It is true that voting is not compulsory, but it is a duty which every patriotic citizen should fulfil. If one has the love of the country at heart, you’re desirous of seeing the country prosper, you loathe the return of dictatorship and tyranny, then you would certainly vote in elections.

Governance is participatory. Gambians should stop saying, ‘I am not a politician and I am not interested in politics’. This statement is never – can never – be entirely true. There is politics in everything we do. Certainly, no matter how passive you are, or think you are; you are interested in the cost of a bag of rice, the road to the market, the availability of drugs at the hospital, the condition of your child’s school and so on. These are made good or bad by the politics of the society. So if someone says they are not interested in politics, they are not being honest to themselves.

I have always said that civic education is the key to changing our society. We must take part in the governance of our country. We must not leave our destiny in the hands of a few people we choose to call ‘politicians’. We all have a role to play in the development of our nation. Don’t wait for me, get up and fulfil your responsibility even if I don’t. Stop looking at the next person and start doing what is right.

Musa Bah
Nusrat SSS

Fashion or madness, which one stands?

Dear editor,

Madness I call it and others call it fashion. It’s a new field even in the academia and or beauty world. During my preschooler years, when our elders see a child with a tore trouser most especially, they associate it with madness. I can fully remember using those tore trousers to wrap cattle heads used for farming. I believe in evolution as a scientist but not this time and its principle to an extent I just read to pass my biology exams in the 12th grade.

Nowadays, adolescents and even some adults although very slim, wear tore clothes and call it swagg or fashion. Which type of world are we living? Well democracy some will say, others will call it human right. Is my right to wear anything as in anything for the sake of clarity and moving around “ken munut si anything”.
The other type comes where youngsters will dress and their trousers will be halfway down the backside (yuutal).

The Government has a long way to go and now is time for business. Let’s get to work and put smiles in the hopeless youths of this great country as they were with you throughout the democratic attainment process.
Often civil servants and private sector workers hardly dress like the above-mentioned. This is because they are responsible enough to assume the mantle of responsible individuals. Let’s give hope to the cream of our society.

I don’t believe in evolution so dress with humility because your body is as sacred as your smart phone. Depression let’s talk.

Ousman Bah
Fajikunda

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