“From what I have observed, the APRC has chosen the choice of the people. I think the race is going to be a smooth sail for the APRC,” Mr Jatta, the Majority Leader at the National Assembly told The Standard in an exclusive interview held recently at the National Assembly Complex.
Janjanbureh, the administrative capital for Central River Region, today goes to the polls in a parliamentary by-election to choose a replacement for the late Foday Jibana Manka who passed away last December.
The overwhelming opposition election boycott, which started in 2012, is ongoing, thus leaving the ruling party to battle it out with the National Reconciliation Party, the only opposition party contesting elections.
Responding to the NRP’s candidate, Mr Kebba Yorro Manneh’s claim that he would win the by-election emphatically, Mr Jatta said his party had chosen not only the choice of the people, but also the most competent person to fill the vacant seat.
He explained: “The APRC candidate has all the qualities that the people are looking for in a National Assembly Member. Ebrima M Sarjo is competent, loyal to the party and consistent. So, the APRC has chosen the choice of the people. And the people do not blindly choose a particular person for a position if they have no confidence in him or her.”
Jatta rubbished Manneh’s claim of having lost to the APRC candidate by a small margin. He said his party was at the time dealing with ‘internal issues’ which worked to Manneh’s advantage.
He added: “The people of Janjanbureh have come to an end with Kebba Yorro Manneh and you will see that when the results come out. The good number of votes that Kebba and his supporters talk about that they said he had as an independent candidate against the APRC candidate was as a result of many factors. There were some issues among the potential APRC candidates as to who was to be selected by the party for the vacant seat. That was what gave Kebba that close race. But in Janjanbureh, APRC has ever won.
“The people of Janjanbureh know the development shortcomings of their town and they are quite appreciative to have a government that built for them a bridge, about to establish there a women’s bureau, and wanted to revive the historical glory of their town. That is why the people of Janjanbureh will tell you that they are not going to compromise the opportunity because the APRC is giving them the services that they have not got before.
“The people are ready to vote for progress and that is why they will vote for the APRC and I don’t even need to go there or an APRC supporter to tell them this. Even before I left when I went there, I knew that Janjanbureh was fine.”]]>