I wish to take this opportunity, on behalf of my whole family, friends and indeed the whole world, to congratulate you and your family, close friends and verily The Gambian people, on your landslide victory in the recently concluded elections.
Your Excellency, that you would win this election was a foregone conclusion and not a surprise even if some of your own supporters couldn’t see it coming. Due to the values I hold near and dear to my heart as an opportunist, I had to be measured in how I campaigned for you because I am a technocrat after all even if I’m a political appointee of yours. While I only pretended to campaign for you because I had to straddle the side of neutrality as well as your side, my support for your presidency knows no limits because in the end, I know that my fortunes are in your esteemed hands.
Your Excellency, as you assume another mandate given to you by Allah through The Gambian people, I remain steadfast in my “belief” that you are indeed the messiah that this great nation of ours had been waiting for all this while. Since your mandate is from Allah, that is who you are answerable to and not the people, especially those who didn’t support you. Your royal excellency, I am also confident that you know the road ahead of you is littered with hypocrites, naysayers and opportunists of all hues. Nonetheless, I trust that if anyone knows how to handle these opportunists that abound, it is you, President Adama Barrow. You eliminated Yaya Jammeh in only four months when no one could do that in twenty-two years. Your coming was long foretold before even you knew what you were destined to be. It was written in the stars. You are the savior and the chosen one by Allah. In over fifty years of independence, no president has done the work you have done in four years. We will remain eternally grateful to you for bettering our lives.
Importantly, I sincerely believe that you know those of us that will always stand by you because we know it is in your hands that our breads get buttered. Therefore, as a minister answerable to you, I hereby pledge my allegiance and singular fidelity to you and your interest. I am ever ready to serve you, to stand by you and to support your aims and objectives in order for you to continue realizing your dreams of making everyone in this country rich especially your family and those of us within your circle. To that end, I plead with you to allow me to continue being a minister in your administration. It is a life my family and I have gotten used to and certainly you are not one to take the pacifier out of the baby’s mouth for your kindness continues to reverberate throughout the opportunist world.
As you reshuffle your cabinet, many will come to you with recommendations of people they think can do a great job for you. But bear in mind that oftentimes, these positions don’t need much experience at all. What matters more than anything else is loyalty to you and the ability to translate this loyalty into sycophancy. You need to surround yourself with people who have the same mindset as you. These are the people that will never see anything wrong with anything you do. These are the people that have your interest at heart. These are the people that really understand that your presidency is a matter of life and death because so many freedoms will be jeopardized if you are not sitting on that fancy chair on Marina Parade. These are the people that will sing your praises. These are the loyal sycophants. And Mr President, there is no more a loyal sycophant and servant than me, your honorable minister. I have mastered the art of duplicity, adopted the esteemed values of hypocrisy and I live by the cherished dictum of opportunism. Mr President, I have sounded out friends to know what you are thinking and I have also sent people close to you to lobby on my behalf so that you may retain me as a minister. I therefore seize this opportunity to urge you to never pay any mind to the opportunists lobbying for positions, specifically my position.
They were not with you when the going was tough. I was. I am confident that you will retain me as minister because anything else will be a demotion. I am enjoying this ride on the backs of Gambians and I have no intention of getting off their backs. We have more work to do.
His excellency, please accept the highest assurance of my consideration and love for you and your family. My family, friends and inner circle are all grateful to you for the opportunity you gave us. Our lives have been transformed for the better. For The Gambia our homeland. I remain,
Your Humble Servant
Minister of …….
This letter is a satirical fiction by Alagie Saidy-Barrow