Letters: Leadership is not like a snake wriggling through the grass

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Dear editor,
People in our African continent have the belief that leadership problem in Africa is cause by African leaders themselves due mainly to different factors such as financial and material greediness in order to remain in power forever.
Some African leaders think they can wriggle like a snake and run away from danger and slither back into their holes.

The issue of leadership in Africa is one of the most challenging issues as the success or failure of any country is largely determined by their leaders.
Good leadership skills and qualities are often developed through a never-ending process of self-study, education, training, experience and emulation. Also as a leader, one should know and appreciate yourself only as servant to your people and nothing else.
Therefore, leaders should always have vision and mission that will be well communicated to their people rather than trying to impress them with falsehood and pomposity.
Leadership is also about taking strong actions and inspiring your people to work harder to achieve the development of the country.

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Some African leaders use power to do what they think can sustain them, which is not inspiring at all.
Some people in higher authorities also contribute towards leadership crisis in their countries by paving way for their leaders to do certain things that are not in the interest of the country.

For example, if the president passes an executive order before his or cabinet and informs them that, he will sack ten senior government officials at once and gives no reason or reasons, they should be bold enough to tell the president, that that is not in the interest of the country.

But unfortunately what we had here is, they will say in, “Yes sir, Mr President, you can go ahead with it.” So the president will have the notion that he is on top of everything. Instead of discouraging the president, they will give him the courage to administer like a dictator not a democrat.
As a servant and leader of your people, allow them to judge you, instead of pushing yourself onto them as their leader, because as a genuine leader, you always need to inspire confidence and support among people as that is the only way to achieve your goals.

Some African leaders fail to get their people move in the right the direction and such leadership goes with abusing thus failure to gain the people’s confidence and commitment to national development. Leadership is not about trampling on your people or abusing them for nothing, because the power given to you as a leader does not make you a boss or leader, but the servant of the people.

Let our leaders know and appreciate that the title of leader is not all about position and authority; instead it entails relationships between you and your people, self-development among others. If any country lacks a good and focused leadership, that country is nowhere and will be nothing but at a bridge that is certain to collapse in not far distance.
To have a good and focused leadership is of paramount importance in any country, especially for matters of progress and development, thus a good leader must be competent and knowledgeable at least in areas of national interest not his own personal interest.

The major role of our leaders should be to mobilise people and resources in order to make development happen in our countries, but is this the reality on the ground for some African leaders?
Some African leaders fail woefully in designing real development plans and strategies for their country and aligning their people, but instead what they first think about is divide and rule tactics.
Our leaders need to come-up with sound and timely decisions and they should also serve as peace-makers at all given times, but not peace brokers. Let them not serve us as perpetual power hungry leaders.

African leaders need to inform and develop a sense of responsibility between themselves and their people. We can only value our leaders if they listen to us, recognise individual effort, practice what they always preach.
Leaders who lack personal integrity will fail. A good leader always wants to be guided by those they respect and also those who have a clear sense of direction in governance matters.

To have respect in your own motherland as a leader, you must be ethical and you must be trustworthy and possess absolute dedication in doing what is good for your country.
In our present day Africa when leaders come to power, the first thing they think about is to see themselves as superior human beings.
Our own leader’s current political leadership style is a typical example of African leaders, which is more shocking to many Gambians when he took the decision to dump his political godfather from his moving bus.

Was it also easy for him to disown the leadership of the UDP after struggling with the party for over 20 years? Some people were surprised and some were not at all surprise because of the enjoyment he is going through in the presidency.
At this crucial moment of the country, after being under the armpit of dictator Jammeh for over 20 years, Mr Adama Barrow’s main focus should be to cultivate a democratic environment for Gambians that will give the citizenry the chance to participate fully in the country’s governance process but instead he is presently busy warming up to be in power for more than one term ignoring the Coalition 2016 Agreement.
Lamin Darboe
Basse

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