By Omar Bah
Omar Beyai, the chairman of the yet-to-be registered “All Peoples’ Party”, has accused President Barrow of failing “to capture the immediate needs” of Gambians in his state of the nation address.
Speaking in a Standard exclusive yesterday from his base in Freetown, Beyai said Barrow has not reflected on how his government intends “to build the foundation of national reconciliation and accelerate building a Gambia we all aspire for”.
He said the president “has not put up a strong message on how his administration intends to address unemployment and security”, arguing that any government should be built on the foundation of protecting and providing for its citizens.
“Government investment will have to recognise and address the changing needs of citizens over their entire lifetimes, provide platforms to help them get the resources and make the connections they need,” the SOS Children’s Village official said.
He claimed that “since the coalition government took office, nothing has changed whatsoever, except for a few things like Barrow giving the public false impression of a new administration… Actually the Barrow and Jammeh governments are birds of the same feather.
“What the new government needs are Gambians who will come and join hands with them to help fulfil the promises made to the voters during the campaign. Barrow is talking about reconciliation in his address, but again, I think looking at how he handles issues like the death of Haruna Jatta and the arrest of opposition militants, one will say he is underestimating the sensitive nature of the country’s reconciliation.
“There is a lack of responsiveness with regard to institutional building in the country. The Gambia has not undergone the requisite changes. And I must say the problem is being compounded by some journalists who proudly identify themselves with political parties and are so upfront with their love for the president.”
Beyai said if The Gambia “is to escape destruction”, the Barrow government needs to be more responsive to the needs and aspirations of Gambians.
“Honestly speaking, if the country’s National Assembly is strong enough, I would have demanded they impeach Barrow right now because he is just not fit to rule,” Beyai argued.