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City of Banjul
Friday, September 18, 2020

Darboe speaks against banning of ex-gov’t officials

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By Omar Bah

Ousainu Darboe, leader of the United Democratic Party has expressed disappointment over government’s decisions on the Janneh commission recommendations.

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Guided by the commission, the government made a decision that former President Jammeh, former secretary generals Momodou Sabally and Dr Njogou Bah, former governor of Central Bank Amadou Colley, among others, be banned from holding public office.

But according to the UDP leader, that decision of government is rather too harsh.

“Banning somebody for life is too much, especially relying on a recommendation of a Commission which is not a criminal trial because those who made these allegations were not cross-examined.

This is just a Commission meant to investigate and establish facts,” he said whiles addressing party supporters in Italy as part of his European tour.

He continued: “How can you deny somebody from holding public office for the remainder of his/her life and then refuse to implement the recommendations for others? What was essential of you establishing a Commission just to punish some and leave others?”
The UDP leader said whosoever is affected by the Commission’s findings should be given the opportunity to appeal the allegations at a Court of Appeal.

“But for the government to take its own decision to say we will treat these people like this and these other people like that is not right and is not something that will promote peace in this country,” he said.

He said banning people from working in public office for the remainder of their life is equal to indirectly closing many doors for them, because even the private companies will be scared of working with such people.

“Do you want these people to end up in the streets as beggars?
“We are not saying we should encourage corruption. Corruption should not be allowed anyway but all those who are involved should be equally punished,” he added.

He also criticized the government for waiting long to recall the expensive vehicles used by MDs of government parastatals.

He accused President Barrow of surrounding himself with former President Jammeh’s APRC people like Yahya Jarjusey, Dembo Santang Bojang and Buba Janneh.

“The same APRC people who fought the UDP are now the best friends of President Barrow, a President that the UDP helped to make.

What Barrow did is disappointing the UDP. Nowadays his enemies are Ousainu Darboe and the UDP,” he said.

However, the UDP leader maintained that his decision to say Barrow should stay for five years was based on the dictates of the constitution.

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