By Omar Bah
The organisers of a pro-government demonstration planned for Sunday have denied claims that President Barrow and his newly-formed National People’s Party are behind the procession.
Rumours floated around that the President is behind the planned march to counter the 3 Years Jotna, who staged an anti-government protest on 16 December asking him to step down.
Speaking to The Standard yesterday, Ebrima Soriba, secretary general of ‘Gambia for Five Years’, said his movement is a group of concern Gambians advocating for President Adama Barrow to serve the five-year constitutional mandate but their plans are not funded by the president and they are independent of any political party.
“We are not interested in Barrow’s butut. If our action favours him, then that is a coincidence but the protest is not directed at strengthening him,” he clarified.
He said the planned march will go ahead on Sunday 12 January.
“We are targeting one hundred thousand people who will all dress in white from across the country. We want to march to show solidarity to the Gambian Constitution which mandates elected president to serve a term of 5 years as opposed to the 3 Years Jotna campaign. We are going to march from the Sting Corner to two hundred meters from Denton Bridge,” Soriba said.
He said at the end of the solidarity march, the group will also submit a petition to the president to ask him to unconditionally complete the five-year constitutional mandate.
Soriba alleged that the 3 Years Jotna group has a hidden agenda as “they are backed by a certain political party that is motivated to ensure regime change through the backdoor”.
“So we also found it necessary to defend the constitution against the Coalition agreement which they brushed aside picking only the 3-year aspect of it. This is why we felt it more necessary to mobilise the Gambian people to come out in our large numbers to show solidarity to the constitution, and not necessarily the President. We believe by doing that we will render the 3 Years Jotna group null and void,” he said.