I wish to share my love for words with you. This is nothing new, as I have been doing this for around five years now, but anyway. Here is a word you can use to impress friends and neighbours: omnipotent. For those of you who have a bit of a dirty mind; no, it has nothing to do with anyone’s potency. A person who is omnipotent is someone who believes that he is an expert in every area. I say he, because it is mostly men who suffer from this delusional mindset. These men love to brag about their abilities and their expertise. They own self confidence in abundance, and lack self distance completely.
Everything in life is a game and they are on the top of it.
Some of you might remember the former president of the US, Donald Trump, when he bragged about his vocabulary and said: ”I have the best words!” Scientists who have studied Donald Trump’s public speeches, say that Mr Trump has a vocabulary of a small child. Mr Trump loved to hold speeches, often at rallies where his associates tried to gather as many people as possible. Many times it was more a matter of where the TV-cameras were placed to show the number of people, than the actual number. If the cameras only film what is in front of them, and not moved to the sides where there were no people, it looked as the place was crowded.
There he was, Mr Donald Trump, shouting his ”best words”, refusing to follow a script and not understanding that he many times was making a fool of himself. As soon as Mr Trump skipped the manuscript, he had no direction in his messages. He repeated himself, ridiculed his enemies and raised his voice to hide how shallow his messages were. Still he believed that he was great, that he had the best words and that he knew everything there was to know in every area possible.
The Minister of Tourism, Mr Hamat Bah, has done it again. It is so amazing that this man is so occupied with almost everything else but his own assignments. He is suffering from omnipotency, he has the solutions for how to deal with bumsters (put them in jail during the tourist season). He knows how to deal with our returning refugees (make them marry Gambian girls). Mr Bah is sometimes in the pocket of President Barrow and praises him, and sometimes he has been shouting too loudly and is muted for some time.
This habit of shouting is troublesome and not civilised, but that doesn’t bother our Minister. He has so many important things to say, and if people don’t want to listen to him it is their own fault. If Mr Bah raises his voice highly enough, people are forced to listen. Minister Bah hasn’t understood that he is allowed to speak, because it is easier to allow him to do that, than trying to convince him to remain quiet. Minister Hamat Bah loves speaking, but the problem is that he is speaking a lot about areas that are not of his concern. I didn’t know that Mr Bah is so passionate about the bread baking business, that he just had to dip his fingers in the dough.
According to the online media platform Kerr Fatou: ”The Minister of Tourism and Culture, Hamat N. K Bah has disclosed what his Ministry is doing to ensure that Gambians take charge of the country’s bakery industry.”
The last time I was searching for information about tourism and the ministry thereof, it said nothing about bakeries and that the Gambian bread should be kneaded by Gambians only. I didn’t know that bread had anything to do with tourism, but perhaps I am wrong. Here in Sweden people love to do something we call fika. That means that we meet and socialise over a cup of coffee and a piece of cake or such. When we visit a new town, we like to visit a café and try what pastries they have there. Perhaps Minister Bah has been in Sweden for a fika and been inspired? Perhaps that is why he is so keen of the bakeries?
Hmm…he actually mentioned something about education in the tourism area and that is good, but bread? Is there no-one who could talk to Hamat Bah and tell him that there is another ministry that is responsible for this kind of activities? If he doesn’t know who to talk to about his creative ideas, I am sure there is someone he can ask. At the same time as Minister Hamat Bah is sharing his ideas, the one he is speaking to could inform him about another problem and that is the wheat. The wheat for the tapa-lapa and such is imported, but could actually be grown in The Gambia.
Minister Bah, who has a fresh interest for the baking industry, might not know that to be able to make bread you first need ingredients for the dough. It seems as Mr Bah hasn’t been baking bread before, otherwise he would have known this little but still necessary detail.
Here is a quote from Mr Bah:
“We facilitated training at Master’s degree level for four members of staff at the Gambia Tourism and Hospitality Institute (GTHI), and the establishment of a fully equipped bakery centre with a capacity to train 100 bakers and pastry cooks every year. We want to increase this number; we are collaborating with the Ministry of Trade to make sure that we train at least 200 bakers in the country because we want to take over the bakery industry back into the hands of Gambians. The only way we can do this is to train Gambians to be able to take it over.”
We want to take over the bakery industry back into the hands of Gambians! And what is wrong with the hands that are already kneading the heavy bread doughs in the bakeries all over The Gambia? You see; this is the problem with how Minister Bah is expressing himself. He is using ”his best words”, but they are not good enough. He is not aware that he is making his message sound racial. Is there a bread war between Gambians and bakers of other nationalities? Are they standing outside each other’s bakeries, shouting and throwing bread dough at each other? It is not like working as a baker is so attractive that other nationalities have come to The Gambia and snitched these opportunities out of the hands of unprepared Gambians.
Please, Minister Bah, keep yourself to the area you are supposed to handle and leave the rest for the professionals. Do something about the shortness of the tourist season instead. The weather is lovely in The Gambia, all year round, so you should make sure that your Ministry is marketing The Gambia for more target groups. If you need some ideas and advice, you can contact me. I love to talk too, and I actually think that I have better words than you.