By Amadou Jadama
The president of the Rice Farmers’ Association of North Bank Region, Sambou Dampha, has implored President Adama Barrow to step down at the end of his three-year term as agreed by Coalition 2016 claiming “Gambians have regretted electing him” head of state.
In an exclusive interview with The Standard, Dampha said: “President Adama Barrow has failed the entire Gambian people because he has failed to fulfill the promises he made during his campaign.
He promised us that he would reduce basic commodities such as bag of rice to D700 and other commodities but today nothing [of that sort] has materialized. Instead, prices have increased.
“We suffered for 22 years [under Jammeh] and that was why we voted for change and yet we have not seen the benefit [of the change]. Instead of improving our living conditions, Barrow is concentrating on how to remain in power but his tactics will not work. What happened here for 22 years, will never be repeated here,” the Upper Baddibu native stated.
He expressed his grief at President Barrow employing people who did not vote for him, and said “those are the ones who destroyed this country through killing, torturing, jailing and disappearance…. while the people who struggled for this change he neglected them.”
He attacked: “Barrow has no time for the country. He is concentrating on how to stay in power for next 10 years. That is why he created the Barrow Youth Movement and the Barrow Fans’ Club. These are not in the interest of Gambians. It is former president Jammeh’s style and we have no interest in any vestiges of Jammeh’s style.
“We are going to remove Barrow after his three years elapsed because he failed us. So it is better for him to step down [voluntarily]. State House is not a political bureau. He has no right to hold political meetings in State House, that place should not be turned into a bantaba where people meet and chat… This has never happened in any country in the world.
“He should not allow chiefs and other people at State House. Since he came to power, he said that seyfolu and alkalolu will not be involved in politics. But today those chiefs are his chairmen while the alkalolu are his campaign managers. I once told him to sack all the chiefs that served under Jammeh but he did not listen to me. He left them there so that they can support his agenda.
“I am telling Barrow that the majority of Gambians are behind Ousainu Darboe and the UDP. Even if Darboe resigns as the leader of the party, we will still continue to support the party as the UDP is owned by Gambians.”
Mr Dampha called on the state broadcaster, GRTS, to give equal coverage to all the political parties.