By Omar Bah
As President Adama Barrow plans to officially launch his National People’s Party (NPP) on Saturday, top party executives have called on Gambians to embrace national unity and maintain peace in the country’s political spectrum.
Adama Barrow came to power in 2016, ending 22 years of brutal dictatorship by Yahya Jammeh and inspiring widespread hope for reforms.
But last year, the Gambian leader announced the formation of his own political party in a move that would allow him to seek a second term in December after he earlier agreed to resign following a 3-year transition period.
Critics of the president have since described the formation of the NPP as a manifestation of betrayal of the Gambian people by the president.
But NPP executive members, who are busy finalising preparations ahead of Saturday’s launching, have different views.
The party’s deputy campaign manager, Dodou Sanno told The Standard yesterday that Gambians should continue to nurture the spirit of unity to build the New Gambia that “we want and deserve. Peace is priceless, that is why the president is tirelessly working towards safeguarding this peace.”
He said all the rhetoric against the president is borned out of hatred for the tremendous job he has been doing in the country.
“The amount of political hatred in this country is worrying and it should be everybody’s business to ensure that we fight against the menace. No individual person owns this country. We should not use democracy to insult or brand the people we elect into office anyhow even if it is not justifiable. It doesn’t help. We should stop the politics of enmity. We should create a level playing political ground for the future generation,” he said.
He said Saturday’s launch will be a difference. “We are urging all our supporters to come in peace and return in peace,” he said.
The chairman of event and venue management committee, Seedy Njie, said all the logistics are completed ahead of Saturday’s event at the Independence Stadium.
“We are done with the arraignments for security, health measures, food, transportation and all the logistics necessary for the biggest ever political event in the history of this country. The event is set to start by 12PM and various speakers from the NPP including the president will speak at the event,” he said.
Njie said the event will be a continuation of strength by the NPP.
“This is why we are doing it at the Independence Stadium. This is why we are targeting thousands of people from all over the country. I can tell you that we cannot even transport all the people who want to come to the event,” he added.
He said during the event they will share the party’s manifesto which will clearly outline what the party stands for and its plans for the country.
“We urge all those who are coming to maintain peace and discipline during and after the event. I also take advantage of this interview to call on my fellow politicians to spread messages of peace and reconciliation. This country doesn’t belong to any individual or tribe. It is our country and we should all be vigilant to jealousy safeguard its peace,” he said.