As the day gets closer, the electorate is being introduced to many aspirants for the two mayoral positions – Banjul and the Kanifing Municipal councils. It will be interesting to see the various contestants crisscross the two communities to canvass for votes.
It is interesting to note that the number of candidates this time round is unprecedented. So many people have expressed their readiness to throw their hats in the ring. It will indeed augur well for the municipalities as voters will have the opportunity to vote for the most suitable candidate from many.
Conversely, voters have to be very cautious as to who to vote for. It will be unfortunate for voters to go in for someone who is either unqualified to do the job; or, is not committed enough to do a good job. Both Banjul City Council and Kanifing Municipal Council need a phase lift after the long neglect they suffered for the past two decades or more. Thus, voters have to proceed with caution as they choose the person who will run their councils for the next five years.
In this regard, the national media – both print and electronic – have a mammoth role to play. They must endeavor to inform the ordinary people about the political aspirants. Journalists, particularly now, do not have to wait for the candidates to call for press conferences and deliver preplanned speeches and then write about that. The journalists must go out there and do thorough investigations and make sure that the voters know everything there is to know about their candidates. This is what will enable them (the voters) make informed choices which is vital to the development of their areas.
It is also hoped that the people of these two communities will not take the lukewarm attitude towards politics and stay home instead of going out to vote. Voting on this day is indeed a duty of every person who lives in these two areas. Remember, voting means that you are having your say in the way your municipality is – will be – run. Take an active part in both the campaign and election in your community.
Citizens should however remember that politics is not enmity. It is simply a way to choose who will run the affairs of your city, area, or country. Elections come and go, but the country remains. Let there be a peaceful, mature and progressive campaign and elections.