By Omar Bah
The opposition Gambia Action Party (GAP) has advised the government to immediately cease all diplomatic ties with the United Arab Emirates in response to the Asian country’s visa ban on Gambia. On Monday, the UAE announced it has suspended 30-day visas for 20 countries including The Gambia.
But in a statement shared with The Standard yesterday, the GAP leader, Musa Yali Batchilly who is currently in Dubai, wrote: “Our leaders must come together in unison and act as the people’s power in collaboration with African Union in ensuring that all countries cease diplomatic ties, squash-off trade or bilateral agreements and sanction United Arab Emirates indefinitely.
“Our borders must remain closed including airspace to the UAE and ban their citizens as well as their allies with zero tolerance. We are calling on the government of The Gambia to spearhead these drastic measures without remorse.
“Our legendary performance as the most well-known continent that accepts free movement with other continents must as well be revised to accommodate similar trends and treat our brothers and sisters’ experiences on their daily journey outside the continent. It’s our time to rise above the mediocratic principle to other continents.
“The recent announcement by the authorities of the UAE to ban African countries with immediate effect violates the international protocol on travelling and movement.
“It’s sad when governments of Africa continuously serve as second fiddle to other continents for exploitative loan deals labelled Africa as recipient continent instead of being donor. Africa is the richest continent on the minerals and resources front, but the lackadaisical and the phenomenon of governance or leadership by the incompetents derail our efforts,” the statement said.