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Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Is ‘Ba’ Kawsu Fofana an Imam or a politician?

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Dear editor,

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Over the years I’ve been following with keen interest the “wordings” of this man with endless struggles of how to classify him, an imam or a politician?
Passion and want of being something are very distinct!
In his “sermons” are infestations of hate and division with very misleading routes making me sometimes perceived him as a graduate “scholar” pursuing relevance in order to assume the status of an imam but always falls short of either the right words or the taste of the words he utters to the public.
Call it a battle between attitude and aptitude!

 

His behaviour in the house of God often urges me with the thoughts of asking whether he needs mentoring on the attainment of religious relevance or if he has lost both the mentors and the relevance combined making him an abandoned and desperate explorer seeking guidance.
Whichever may be the case, ‘Ba’ Kawsu needs not be reminded that the builders of society are the informers which include the preachers and their role is to construct and not to destruct societal peace for hate is a seed of disorder which is a threat to progress.
Was he in a political rally or a spiritual congregation?

 

It is worth asking when he did return from the kingdom of god that he was told those cursed by him (Allah) and would be accorded hell as their final resting place. I do not have to tell but remind him that the sins propagated between humans can never be forgiven by Allah except from the person wronged. And with knowledge of this, he should have taken a minute off his period of hallucination to imagine the number of people he has wronged with such a hateful “political speech” called a sermon.
Are the lessons of the past not been learnt?

 

I’ve said to many and I will repeat it here that two sensitive mistakes that cost Jammeh his presidency were his reported issue with the Mandinkas and the Islamic state declaration which I thought all sober Gambians did learn from but no, some nonentities are shamelessly defending this hateful, divisive, misleading, hypocritical and tribalist “imam” who has been so much possessed by bitterness making him go far off the lane propagating disorder. ‘Ba’ Kawsu preach peace for Islam is all about peace!

 

It is a known fact that compulsion in religion has been over many centuries ago for which no one has the authority to tell others the religion to follow nor assume knowledge of those going to hell. Hence only one insane will pollute the public space with mischievous utterances in the name of religion.
We should all be careful and remember that religion can be a very expensive and dangerous veil which when used by certain multi-coloured people in our society, can cost us immeasurable damage with decades of incomplete repairs.

Envisioning New Gambia: education, hard work and self-pride

Dear editor,

The changes we make must be immediate and ensure equal opportunities for all our children regardless of gender or geography. We must get it right this time in order to effect meaningful change. Guarantee quality education for every child from kindergarten to the highest level of scholarship.

 

There have been too many missed opportunities, when scholarship grants were not awarded to well deserving students whom through hard work and superior scholastic aptitude would have excelled in any field of studies. Instead, grants were awarded to students because of their families´ social status and not because they meet the scholastic requirement and aptitude. This corruption coupled with poor decisions made by educators within the education system ultimately exhausted not only the resources available at the time but had dire consequences for deserving students and the country at large.

 

The overwhelming pleasure of freedom we are experiencing must not distract us from the ultimate goal of the new Gambia. Where the yardstick by which success is measured is hard work, trust, cooperation, empathy, respect, and not cronyism and or class based relationships. The new Gambian education system has to emphasize the ambition of leaving no child behind, make sure merit is given to deserving students and that the content of education is self-reflective and self-representative.

 

It is an established fact that the kind of future we create for coming generations begins with the content of their education. What we teach our children to equip them with pride, the morality of hard work is the A & Z of the new Gambia we envision in the celebration of our newfound freedom. The tools we give them to meet the challenges ahead in this ever-changing world is crucial for the kind of future they would construct.

 

The same way the Western, Arabic, Chinese, Indian and Japanese self-understanding is both derived and connected to the spirits of their ancestors. The challenge at hand is how we integrate education with the spirits of our ancestors as a method of measuring the meaningfulness and strength of our freedom, morality and self-respect.
Wishful thinking and bantering about what is wrong or right is not a solution. The only way out is to build the New Gambia on solid and concrete ideas envisioned, planned executable and measurable.

Ebrima Kamara & Kunba N’dure

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