In a few months, Gambians will go to the polls again. This time round, it will be to elect their local government representatives. They will vote for their mayors, ward councillors and the like. This is another important decision Gambians are about to make.
Interestingly, this time round, there is an unprecedented number of people who have indicated their willingness to throw their hats in the ring. Many of these are young Gambians which is indeed worth celebrating.
In the past, many youths looked at politics with some amount of scorn perhaps due to the woeful failure of our earlier crop of politicians. The large number of aspiring candidates both for Banjul City Council and the Kanifing Municipal Council has been hailed by some and denounced by other observers.
Whichever side of the isle you are on, there is no gainsaying that the election this time round promises to be very interesting indeed. The fact that there are many contestants will give voters many options and make the competition for attention – and ultimately votes – more intense and interesting.
Whether one will be contesting under the banner of a political party or as an independent candidate, all aspiring contestants should tighten their belts and get ready for what promises to be a tough race.
Government, therefore, and political parties, should seek to create a conducive environment and a level playing field to ensure that voters have the right choices to make informed decisions. The media also has a huge role to play in ensuring that the public has access to right, accurate and timely information about the people who want to run their affairs.
Tighten your seatbelt as we get into a rollercoaster of electioneering!