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MARTIN SAYS GAMBIA IN LEADERSHIP CRISIS

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As he endorses Bensouda

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By Omar Bah

Lawyer Assan Martin has said The Gambia is struggling with a leadership crisis as he announced yesterday that his team will be backing Mayor Talib Bensouda in his re-election bid for KM.

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Addressing a news conference at Fajara, the lawyer, a strong critic of Mr Bensouda’s UDP, said: “I hereby announce that I and Team Assan have committed to support Talib Bensouda to bring the much-needed change in KM. Team Assan has a mission to put back this country where it belongs. That is why we decided to endorse Mayor Bensouda. It is important that we leave a good legacy for the future generation. This country needs exemplary leadership and some of us will fight for it. So, we are not just going to endorse Mr Bensouda but we will put pressure on him to ensure that he continues to deliver”.

He said Mayor Bensouda achieved a lot in his first term but still a lot more needs to be done to address the pressing issues facing the municipality and its people.

“This is not a UDP thing – the country needs salvation. A lot of people are living in hardship because of bad politics and failed leadership. The Gambia needs to be reorganised and we need to have good leadership that can help us drive this country forward,” he added.

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Lawyer Martin added that the Gambia is “so disorganised and following a trend that is bad for its democracy”.

“We have potential in this country. If Rwanda and other countries can do it, why not us? The best talents in Africa are Gambians but we are so disorganised,” he said.

Lawyer Martin said he had intentions to contest the 2023 mayoral election but changed his mind to support Talib Bensouda for continuity in the interest of building a better municipality.

“Following series of meetings with members linked to Mayor Bensouda’s campaign team and himself, we concluded that we will rally behind him to help him build a strong foundation for the council,” he said. He said the KM mayor’s outstanding performance during the past five years is commended and because of that he deserves a second term.

“We discovered that his managerial skills and stance against corruption are unquestionable so because of that we thought it is only right that we rally behind him. There also exists a common idea with his developmental agendas,” he said.

The lawyer argued that his next move would be to fight to ensure that the laws governing the local councils are revisited to give the mayors and chairpersons more power to execute their duties.

Mayor Talib Bensouda expressed gratitude to Team Assan, saying the new addition will in no doubt help his re-election bid.

He said the endorsement of a strong critic like Lawyer Martins says a lot about how much the people of KM appreciate his achievements.

Mayor Bensouda expressed gratitude to the people of KM and assured them of his commitment to continue serving their interest at all times.

“I am young and need a lot of advice from Gambians because KM and this country need a lot of work,” he concluded. 

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