By Omar Bah
Reacting to a question raised at a youth forum over the rising tribal sentiments in The Gambia, the leader of the People’s Democratic Organisation for Independence and Socialism, Halifa Sallah said ethic inclination is equal to self-hate.
“Ethnic belief is about you dealing with your mindset and if you have that mindset and you look at yourself and you pretend to be a Gambian citizen, then you are not a Gambian citizen because the Gambian citizen doesn’t discriminate against his fellow Gambian irrespective of religion or tribes,” Sallah said recently at a national dialogue held at the American Corner.
The Serekunda national assembly member said a Gambian citizen cannot discriminate against his or her fellow Gambian or see the difference between him or her with a fellow Gambian.
“If you are travelling, you travel with a passport which is not Mandinka, Fula or Wolof passport but a Gambian passport. Then who are you if you are going with a Gambian passport and cannot still answer that you are a Gambian?” he said.
Sallah said Gambia has failed since 1970 to build a republic.
“We have failed. So we are failing and we want to succeed now but unless we challenge who we are and accept that we are Gambian citizens, I don’t know what type of society we are going to have.
I will be gone but you will be killing and fisting each other and that trajectory has not changed because the mentality is still the same. You must fight that mentality for all Gambians to be safe in Gambia; without that, there is no safety for anybody. We are only going to be safe when we create a Gambia that is owned by the Gambian people. Where we see each other as equal irrespective of our religion and ethnicity,” he observed.