Death struck veteran Gambian diaspora journalist Pa Nderry Mbai on Monday and thousands of Gambians mourn the life of a man who stood tall among the voices that helped liberate the country from the clutches of a tyrant.
Love him or hate him Pa Nderry was passionate, resolute and uncompromisingly dedicated to his trade, which he plied with an insatiable lust for important stories. His passion for journalism led him to abandon his job in the late 1990s and as a rookie reporter in The Daily Observer newsroom what he had lacked in experience he made for in exuberance and persistence. Pa Nderry would hardly allow an edition go to bed without his story in the front page. As a reporter he was too greedy for news for his own good especially at a time when the Jammeh dictatorship was at his height. When he moved to the United States in 2004, he joined the legion of Gambian diaspora journalists and bloggers who fought a gallant battle in informing Gambians about issues and events not possible to cover in Gambian domestic media in Banjul. Pa Nderry did this with so much vigour and intensity that he became the principal reference for researchers and people interested in Gambian news.
Alongside his digital radio, Pa Nderry’s Freedom media group became part of Gambian life for those at home and abroad. While many may have disagreed with him, one could not just ignore him.
On this sad occasion we join the thousands of Gambians in mourning a true legend in Gambian journalism and the struggle to liberate the country from the clutches of the dictator Jammeh. Rest in peace MBai Bassou.