By Sulayman Jeng
Relationships are generally construed in varied ways and circumstances. However, for any relationship to be sustainable, healthy and enriching it must be borne out of shared principles, ideals and sincere way of life. Oftentimes, a relationship oozes love and support for one another. I must hasten to add one may sincerely love another but will not support that person on certain issues, acts and utterances. That is honesty and sincerity. Support, on the other hand, is an effort exerted to better a person by honing his or her strengths and improving on their weaknesses. For instance, when one slips or trip you serve as a leaning pillar halting their fall. Same it true with political alliance and support.
Hon Darboe and I share mutual respect and admiration for each other. As such, there is not in this world that will ever change that. No political alliance or pressure will coerce me to home him in an undeserving house. At this juncture, one may wonder why I bartered his party for NPP. Tellingly, I left because of the amount of disrespect and profanities proffered on people just because their views on certain issues contradict theirs. And I had no iota of regret for my decision. I must commend the UDP for its efforts in mitigating the malaise amongst its support base. Now, one rarely comes across such repelling acts from UDP supporters. They understood such uncut attributes only repel instead of winning support from people.
Unfortunately for NPP, such a nauseating cult is surfacing its ugly head. President Barrow is losing a lot of support by such attributes of those claiming to be in his support. Logically, you do not support a person by repelling others from getting close to him or her. Soliciting political support is persuasion and inclusion but not exclusion. Some will argue Barrow is his own factor precipitating the ebbing of his support base. Their reasons: “He doesn’t heed advice”, and “He only cares about his personal development”.
I do not agree. A wolof dictum creeps to mind, “Saytane wahut degga why yahana hellat”. Many reach out to me saying “Saul please speak to your man” about this or that. From their frustrated pleas I heard love and genuine intentions for Barrow to have a successful legacy. But when I reveal to them, that I have neither access nor made any attempt to meet or speak to him directly, some expressed surprise. I support him mainly because I believe in his NDP. Whether he reads or someone tells him of my support for him I do not know. But if he does not start fighting against those who are insulting and bullying others in his name, I will not continue to support NPP because what I considered wrong in UDP, I will not take the same as right in NPP. In as much as I want the best for him “ndimbal nachi fekka lohoi borom”.
Lamentably, so many things are happening and said at the same time, it needs an honest, clear and healthy mind to digest it all at once and segregate the grains from the chaff. You hear certain audios, you mind will hault abruptly making your system unconscious. Then your mind recovers on a reality check stage testing your sanity. Is it true? You hear it challenging you. A vivid illustration is the purported audio of Jaliba Kuyateh debunking President Barrow. When I listened to it, my first reaction was oh hell no. It can’t be true. Jaliba has remained apolitical ever since, why not. Then what a colleague said came rushing back, “Jawara was respected but not feared by Gambians.
Jammeh was feared but not respected. And Barrow is neither respected nor feared”. In state of deciphering, almost settled perhaps he was succinct on his summation of our three leaders. Then another video from Jaliba Kuyateh disassociating himself from the purported audio. Despite Jaliba’s attempt to control the damage the said audio has caused, it re-echoes what many Gambians are thinking aloud. Some of these Gambians withdrew their support for Barrow because of some of the issues raised in that audio. Whether it was Jaliba or an impostor some of the issues raised in that audio are valid and no amount of whitewashing can efface them. You love and support President Barrow then tell him the truth.
Some are telling him not to mind the diaspora. Ignoring the diaspora will be costly for him. Almost every Gambian household is either directly or indirectly sustained by the diaspora. The diaspora is a powerful influence with sophisticated information desimination facilities. And a substantial percentage of our national GDP is financed by the diaspora. Your own election victory was propelled by the diaspora. So who will lose out if you chose to ignore the diaspora? Like I always underscore my support for you is anchored on truth and sincerity. I will continue to applaud you where you are right and condemn you if you go wrong. They will certainly tell you what you want to hear instead of the truth. Do you know how Buddhism resulted? Guttamah Buddha was a prince. His father kept him away from seeing the outside world. All his childhood, he never saw poverty, illness and death. One day, he decided to venture outside the four walls of his palace. There he was met by the opposite of the life he was raised. As a consequence, he foresook his affluent life in search of truth. In short, truth always triumphs. So don’t let them cage you in falsehood.
Jammeh was not a superman but he understood Gambian psychic. He cross checked whatever he was told to ensure he was not cheated by his informers. That was one of the reasons they feared him. At times he just pulled a smart one on them to discover their unreliability. That is what you seriously need. Kunyepp tofli nga toy. Almost every Gambian cannot be wrong in their position on some of those in your circle. Get rid of them and see. At this point all some of us can do is tell you the truth and nothing but the truth. The rest is for you to accomplish.