By Lamin Cham
When you think the APRC roulette wheel has come to a final stop, it goes on spinning at an even greater tempo. After “dissolving” the old executive, instituting a new one and instructing them to work with Ganu and its leader on 15th October, APRC’s mercurial supremo Yahya Jammeh has now instructed them to work with GDC.
On Friday, the Jammeh-backed APRC faction led by Yahya Tamba, signed the alliance deal with the GDC and announced that it will now choose the party’s leader Mamma Kandeh and not Ganu’s Sheikh Tijan Hydara as flag-bearer for 4th December presidential election. Hydara was conspicuously absent at the signing ceremony.
Since then Mr Hydara has not made any public comment on the matter. However, Ganu’s second vice president Mohammed Mendy yesterday said it is improper for one party to decide on a flag-bearer for three parties.
He explained: “We were invited by Yahya Tamba and his executive to a meeting with GDC at a hotel near Palma Rima where he announced that we are going to work in an alliance to be led by Mamma Kandeh on the instruction of Yahya Jammeh. Everyone knows that it was Yahya Jammeh who announced to the world that the APRC is going to work with Ganu. But they have now made him to believe that GDC is bigger than Ganu. That is not the case. The bigness of GDC is now just in the name. Besides, many APRC supporters including “Baitullah” (a popular APRC WhatsApp commentator) have said they will not back an alliance led by Mamma Kandeh. So here again, it is the Yahya Tamba executive who are going to join Kandeh but the supporters are staying with Ganu, just as with the case of Fabakary Tombong’s executive and the NPP.”
However, Habib Secka, a member of the Jammeh-handpicked executive committee said the former president called and instructed them to rally behind Mamma Kandeh as flag-bearer. “Yes he first told us to work with Ganu but at no time did he say that the Ganu leader should be the flag-bearer. But we are still very much interested to work with Ganu as directed by our leader Jammeh. In fact, as I speak now we are deeply engaged in negotiations to keep Ganu in our fold and to work together and we are hopeful. In politics anything is possible,” Mr Secka said.
Meanwhile The Standard has been told by credible sources within Ganu that the party will go ahead to nominate its flag-bearer Sheikh Tijan Hydara on Wednesday as scheduled by the IEC.