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Cleric proposes imams put up a presidential candidate at next election

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By Omar Bah

A US-based Gambian imam, Momodou Lamin Ceesay, has accused the Barrow administration of misusing public funds and is proposing that imams close ranks and put up a candidate at the next presidential election.

In an audio shared with The Standard, the top US-based imam said corruption in the Barrow administration is on steroids.

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“In the next presidential election, I will propose for us to have an imam as a candidate to shape the destiny of this country,” he said.

He stated that it would be ideal for an imam to run for president at a crucial time when The Gambia finds itself in the hands of “corrupt politicians”. He said countries like Saudi Arabia are led by clerics.

“We have individuals in the Barrow-administration who are destroying the country. These individuals are corrupt and dishonest. What is happening in The Gambia is very sad,” Imam Ceesay said.

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The top cleric said The Gambia will never realise its development aspirations if its citizens do not speak truth to one another.

He added: “You fight against a system because you said the person that led that system is a killer and a bad leader but all the people who were his accomplices are now back in your government. And the billions of dalasis that are coming into the country are going into the pockets of corrupt officials who have no love for the country. It is very sad that this government is taking loans in the name of Gambians and few people are sharing these monies among themselves. I am saying these things because the Qur’an teaches us to speak the truth.”

Imam Ceesay challenged his fellow imams in the country to come out and speak truth to power to stop misusing public funds.

“There is so much corruption in this country. All our money is being misused through payment of per diems and other corrupt means. This is why you see their [public servants’] naked videos everywhere,” he said.

Imam Ceesay said “it is only in The Gambia where big thieves are walking freely, while the young people who are caught with one wrap of cannabis are being imprisoned”.

“Just look at all the reports the media has published on the National Audit Report on government corruption. What has the justice system done about these individuals? But the moment a poor boy is arrested with one bundle of cannabis they will quickly sentence him to jail. Our justice system is failing us,” the imam queried.

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