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City of Banjul
Sunday, September 27, 2020

Halifa calls for scrapping of First Lady’s office

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By Omar Bah

The Honourable Halifa Sallah, National Assembly Member of Serekunda, has called for the abolition of the Office of the First Lady.

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“Of course all wives of President are respectable people and should not be subject of discussion here, but by putting it in the budget will make it a subject of discussion, why should such an office exist and not only in The Gambia but throughout the African continent?” he questioned.

Speaking at the National Assembly in the ongoing scrutiny of the 2018 budget, Sallah said throughout the world there are offices of first ladies, “Margaret Thatcher had a husband but nobody has talked about the office of the first husband. And those who are gender sensitive are not still taking this up.”

“How many Presidents have been women? Why not make their husbands first husbands?” he argued.
He continued: “I am not just saying any other man; I am just putting the matter that family issue is personal and not a matter for a republic.

Family members should not be a subject of discourse or scrutiny but by including them in the budget, you made them subject of scrutiny. So, I am advising very strongly that if we are going to have a new start, let us eliminate that. It should not be part of our own discourse or part of our state architecture because the state does not recognise anybody who is not elected or appointed into the public service for a post,” he said.

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