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Saturday, December 4, 2021

Foni ex-chief denies GAP chairmanship, says he’s still APRC

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By Omar Bah

The former chief of Foni Bintang Karanai, Alfusainey Jarjue, has denied reports that he is the new national chairman of the Gambia Action Party.

Last month, GAP shared a statement with The Standard announcing that Chief Jarjue was nominated by the party executive to hold the position until the party goes to its next congress.

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The party also said the former chief had announced leaving the APRC and joined Musa Batchilly’s party.

But the former traditional ruler who walked into the offices of The Standard yesterday morning, said: “I want to make it emphatically clear that I am not the chairman of any party. I have never discussed anything regarding chairmanship or even membership of GAP with Musa Batchilly or anyone at the party.

“I have no allegiance to any political party except the APRC. The announcement has really affected my family and I want to clarify that it is not true,” Chief Jarjue said.

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Advice to government

The former chief urged the government to put Foni at the centre of its development agenda. “They should not treat Foni otherwise just because the former president, Yahya Jammeh, hails from there. President Jammeh’s Foni and the Foni of today are completely different, so they should not sideline us for whatever reason,” he advised.

Jarjue said he is a member of the National Council of Elders and the members are engaged in reconciliation and discussing important national issues. 

He urged all those who have not acquired a voter’s card to do so before registration closes on Sunday.

“The country belongs to all of us – we should stop insulting each other and respect each other’s views. I want to urge the political parties to avoid being hostile to one another. This is the only way we will be able to ensure a peaceful election,” he said. He said people should stop insulting tribes. “No tribe is better than the other in this country,” he said.

Mr Jarjue was installed chief during the presidency of Yahya Jammeh and destooled in 2019.

During his tenure as headchief of Karanai district, he was appointed the president of the West Coast Region Land Tribunal and served as adviser to the National Council of Alkalolu as well as the spokesman of the National Council of Chiefs.

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