Darboe explains absence at state funeral

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By Amadou Jadama

The leader of the United Democratic Party Ousainu Darboe has said he did not go to the state funeral of former vice president Joof at the national assembly because he didn’t receive any invitation.

Darboe who attended the burial though at Bajulinding has been conspicuously absent from the funeral when an empty seat labelled with his name was seen on television.

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“I was not at the national assembly because nobody gave me an invitation and I read from the programme that invited guests will be seated at a particular time, and since I did not have any invitation, I could not just go to the National Assembly. But while watching the ceremony, I saw that there was a seat apparently reserved for me. But nobody sent an invitation to me “, he said.

 The UDP leader said he has visited the Joof family in Bajulinding since Thursday. ”I am here again today to attend the burial since I do not need any invitation for that. I have also

delivered a message of condolences to President Adama Barrow on the demise of the vice president “, Darboe told The Standard.

Paying his tribute Darboe said Badara was his colleague with whom he shared deep mutual respect. ”We served in the same cabinet for two years and four months, and I found him to be a very professional person and focused. The man was full of common sense and very purposeful. Even before that, I followed his works at the Ministry of Local Government “, the UDP leader said. Mr Darboe added that Badara has laid a foundation which must be built on by everyone.