By Baba Sillah
Abdoulie Barry, a retired anti-narcotic officer has thumbed down plans by the APRC to mark the 23rd anniversary of Yahya Jammeh’s military takeover.
Speaking to The Standard yesterday in Banjul, Mr Barry said the proponents of the plan like the Foni Kansala representative, Musa Amul Nyassi, should be focused on engaging their people to reconcile rather clamouring for the celebration of the July 22nd anniversary “when tensions are high among the people [in the country]”.
He postulated that the government in power is democratically elected and the Constitution does not mandate the celebration of a coup d’état or a revolution.
He added: “The former regime came to power through a coup d’état by a military junta which promised to relinquish power to civilians but reneged. The former regime ruled the country with an iron fist for 22 years without any development until in December last year when it was removed through the ballot box. Any government that removed a democratically elected government through the barrel [of a gun] should not be celebrated and celebrating it would mean celebrating a coup d’état which is unconstitutional and condemned by all.”
He appealed to Gambians to exercise patience and give the new government a chance as it inherited a bankrupt economy which would require time to fix.
Nonetheless, he exhorted the government “to be steadfast, focused and prioritise development in areas such as energy and agriculture which are critical to the economy of any nation, moreso The Gambia”.