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Gov’t should be mindful of selective justice

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By Modou Lamin Faye

Abuse of power and selective enforcement or justice is the fastest way to destabilise a country, lose power, and weaken a criminal justice system. It creates an opportunity for the public to do everything in their power to remove a sitting administration and open doors for violent demonstrations, thereby forcing the people to choose a leader they never had the chance to get to know before electing him in to office (president Barrow) especially when people are tired of being oppressed by powerful and influential people and seeing them getting away with the crimes that they commit. Barrow’s administration should get a reality check and understand that access to justice is a basic human right and it is essential to the rule of law, therefore, it must be ensured to everyone. President Barrow should also learn from former president Jammeh’s lessons about how using the police, SIS, military, and judiciary system for his political agenda could easily turn the whole country against him and lead him to his downfall.

The Inspector General of Police (IGP) and Interior Minister should stop “brown-nosing” president Barrow to keep their job, or mixing politics with enforcing the law. Former president Jammeh and other irresponsible leaders tried it, and it didn’t end well for them and their families. Former president Jawara (may his soul continue to rest in peace) spent most of his life after presidency in exile and now former president Jammeh is also in exile spending his life after presidency in a foreign country wondering when his day of court will come for the same reasons. Jammeh should have been home enjoying his hard work or fruits of labor just like presidents in America and other countries, but because of the fact that he abused then power, government offices and funds, and violated people’s rights, Jammeh and his family cannot come back to the country in fear of retaliation and his 22 years legacy went down in the drain to the point his mother died and he could not even pay his last respect. Security personnel, especially the head of security should not allow anyone to use their status, power, influence, position, or money to mentally, psychologically, and emotionally control or compromise them. The Interior Minister and IGP must not allow Barrow, family, or politics cloud their judgement in enforcing the law and doing the right thing for the common good and betterment of The Gambia. The IGP and the Interior Minister’s responsibility is to ensure that all citizens are treated equally in the eyes of the law and no one should be given preferential treatment over another.

President Barrow and his administration did not like it when former president Jammeh treated the Gambian people the same way that they currently are treating the Gambian people. The police are not professionally handling conflicts between political parties especially when it involves the two main parties, UDP and NPP, some PIU officers are using excessive force to restrain or arrest a subject and they are not criminally/civilly being held accountable for their actions, taxpayers’ money are being used for pollical agendas and riot gear to oppress the people instead of buying equipment to protect them and to bring infrastructural development where the public can create opportunity for themselves, government is constantly asking taxpayers and citizens to pay more money for tariffs, taxes, airport security and ports clearing fees but are not delivering to the Gambian people. What kind of investment goes one way?  What kind of God-fearing people would treat another human being like this? The Gambian would complain about something that someone or government is doing but they will never bring the same change that they have been soughing for when they are given the opportunity to do so, which someone with integrity would not do.

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President Barrow talked about his plans for life after presidency, but may I get him a reality check about the fact that the way he is leading the country would put him on the wrong side of history, which would definitely cause his plan to fail because the next government would investigate his every dealing and hold him and his government accountable. I urge president Barrow to start focusing more on using taxpayers’ money to develop the country NOT only by building new roads but something to generate revenue and create more job opportunities. Barrow should also be holding everyone in all institutions accountable including himself for their actions and making sure that the IGP, Interior Minister, and all security personnel guarantee effective application of human rights to everybody in The Gambia regardless of their power, political, influential, financial, and other status; as it is the duty of the government and the judiciary to ensure that every civil or criminal case is investigated impartially, and the principles of due process are upheld at each stage of the criminal justice process

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