The leader of the Gambia Alliance for National Unity GANU Sheikh Tijan Hydara has demanded an apology from the online platform PYFC edited by Manyima Bojang,
A letter before court action addressed to the publication from Hydara’s lawyers led by Bubacarr AMO Badjie seen by The Standard, warned that failure to apologise for the ‘misinterpretations’ made against him by the publication within seven days would result in court action. The full content of the letter reads:
“In respect to your publication on your Facebook media platform about Sheikh Tijan Hydara, you stated inter alia that Skeikh Tijan Hydara travelled to meet Baytoulayi in his base in Casamance for special discussions on making an alliance with APRC No To Alliance breakaway group. According to you, Sheikh Tijan told Baytoulayi to convince President Yahya Jammeh to endorse him as the flag bearer of APRC NAM and GANU alliance. Worthy of note is your deliberate failure to put any timeline to these allegations.
Your above allegations are completely misleading meant and aunderstood to mean that after Sheikh Tijan Hydara withdrew from the Alliance that his GANU Party had with the APRC No To Alliance Movement back in October 2021, he took steps to revive the said alliance which you always knew to be completely false and misleading to say the least. No doubt you calculated by your publication to bring discord in GANU Party’s membership of the NPP led Coalition that GANU joined after it withdrew from the GANU – APRC No To Alliance Movement alliance.
Certainly, for reasons only known to you, you conceived and calculated by your said publication to damage my client’s integrity and reputation and indeed defame his character that he betrayed the trust and confidence that His Excellency President Adama Barrow has in the commitment of GANU to the NPP led Coalition, which was founded on mutual respect, friendship, hospitality, and generosity of heart and ardent efforts to build trust across the political divide to unite our peoples in national development.
In light of the foregoing, your actions are completely unacceptable especially in light of the fact that you meant to cast my client in such light to discredit him in the eyes of His Excellency the President and NPP led coalition Partners and in the eyes of the members of the Community of The Gambia and especially the supporters and sympathizers of the NPP led Coalition at home and abroad that form the majority in The Gambia. Meanwhile, your said publications about my client are widely accessible to the public at home and abroad thereby continuing to defame his character. As such, I am instructed to demand that you do the following:-
1. Immediately make a public apology to my client and indicate therein that all the above statements of yours are false misrepresentation of facts about my client’s party’s alliance with the APRC No to Alliance breakaway group and, publish same in three (3) local newspapers of very wide circulation in The Gambia.
2. Immediately delete your said publication against my client from your Facebook pages and from circulation on the internet and publish in its stead, the following –
“H.E Excellency Sheikh Tijan Hydara ORG is the leader of Gambia Alliance for National Unity (GANU) Party. He is a member of the NPP led Coalition to support His Excellency the President Barrow’s endeavors during his presidency and beyond in doing his outmost efforts to fulfill the National Development Agenda. As part of fulfilling the National Development Agenda, Hydara is the Ambassador of The Gambia to The Gambian Embassy in Cuba, an appointment extended to him by His Excellency President Adama Barrow to further strengthen the bilateral relations between The Gambia and Cuba for the mutual benefit of our two countries in all our areas of cooperation.
H.E. Hydara is enthusiastic, energetic, multiskilled, multi-talented and always ready to add value to the cause of Africa and The Gambia. He is a Barrister of the Supreme Court of Nigeria and a Senior Barrister and Solicitor of the Supreme Court of The Gambia and founder of Lex Fori Law Chambers.
H.E Hydara has over 30 years hands-on experience and is held in very high esteem and honour because he is a consummate professional who has a remarkable professional career. Prior to his appointment as Ambassador to the Gambian Embassy in Cuba, he served in social justice issues, championing and transforming the rights and lives of courageous individuals and communities, consulting via NGOs, non-profits and community-based organisations, the private sector, international organisations such as the UN and the AU. He was Attorney General and Minister of Justice of The Gambia and later appointed The Gambian High Commissioner to The Republic of Senegal. As Attorney General and Minister of Justice, inter alia, he initiated the establishment of the Faculty of Law at the University of The Gambia where he also served as Lecturer.
One thing that H.E. Sheikh Tijan Hydara and GANU Party will never forget is His Excellency President Adama Barrow’s friendship, hospitality, and generosity of heart and ardent efforts to build trust across the political divide to unite our peoples and promote inter-party solidarity in national development. Sheikh Tijan Hydara abides by now and forever, his most ardent desire including GANU Party his assurances to the President and to the NPP led Coalition Partners that he is sincerely committed to continuing to do his outmost efforts to support His Excellency President Adama Barrow’s endeavors to fulfill His Excellency’s National Development Agenda.”
Take notice that you are given only 7 days to comply with this demand or else, my client will be left with no choice but to file a case against you in the High Court of The Gambia for defamation of character without any further correspondence. In court, my will claim Millions of Dalasis from you. The choice is yours.”
Meanwhile The Standard contacted PYFC editor Manyima Bojang about the concern and demand of the Ganu leader and she replied: “We stand by our story and would not apologise because all what we reported was that Mr Hydara visited Baytoulai which is not disputed because Baytoulai himself made an audio confirming that which we have. About the timing, we did not write anything suggesting that the visit was now. We only referred to the visit in the context of a current news trending that UDP might be cosying up with No To Alliance Movement just as was the case with GANU back then.
My Hydara had himself texted us with his reaction which we published already”. We do not harbour any intention to defame or spoil GANU’s relations with any alliance. We reported in good faith and we are ready to face Mr Hydara in court if he chooses that path.”