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City of Banjul
Sunday, August 1, 2021

Open appeal to the Government and politicians in Jimara

By Mama Salieu Jallow

I hereby write as a concerned constituent to express my disappointment and bring to your notice pertinent issues that need urgent, timely and collective efforts for the interest of peace and harmony in the constituency. As a youth leader and a good citizen, I take it upon myself to add my voice to the domestic politics in Jimara.

As I quote from Theodore Roosevelt speech titled Duties of American citizenship “it ought to be axiomatic in this country that every man must devote a reasonable share of his time to doing his duty in the political life of a community. Nothing Worth gaining is ever gained without efforts. The people who say that they have no time to attend to politics are simply saying that they are unfit to live in a free community.” Therefore, I am fit to live in Jimara because I would devote my reasonable share of time to highlight and critically scrutinize my representatives.

Some leaders of political parties are from Jimara such as GDC leader, NPP leader, PPP leader and the administrative secretary of GAP. With these people from the same district and even share village boundaries, we need an honest, and mature politics to maintain peace, unity and to live harmoniously amongst ourselves.

Politics of unhealthy exchange of ideas will never do any good to the constituency but rather bring hatred, chaos, confusion, division and enmity in Jimara, which we shouldn’t allow to happen for the betterment of all and sundry.

Therefore, I urge all those in the political spectrum to compete and exchange ideas, visions and ambitions on how to develop Jimara and the country at large. When one is afflicted by words, hatred, fear, rage, pain or shock – no matter what the cause – one must stop, must pause, so that one’s response is reasoned. In lieu thereof, I am appealing to political figures to observe and know when such circumstances or situations arise. This is a time for great perseverance and tolerance. This is the time to come together and solve our problems or issues amicably without blame. This is not the time for heroic action, but the time for everyone – everyone — to enter into deep, heartfelt, selfless, tempered thinking and prayers. This is not the time for opinions. This is the time for careful consideration. This is the time to take all the time necessary to save our lives.

I am of the opinion that the brotherhood and deep rooted affection for the constituency and the common decency among ourselves and the respect for one another should be immune to the greatest of crises and the most unforeseen circumstances.  This is why, I wish to respectfully alert you to the fact that you have failed a large section of your constituency’s people in ignoring certain fundamental aspects of their lives and livelihood such as youth unemployment, lack of access to higher education , lack of electricity , lack of pipe borne water, and good road-network and many other contemporary issues that need urgent consideration and solutions.

There are about eighty six ( 86) villages in the constituency and out of these villages only about twelve (12) are having access to safe drinking water and electricity. My politicians, I  am certain that your briefing teams have, by now, provided you with facts and statistics stating the impending youth unemployment in the constituency.

Let each of us turn to the wisdom in our traditions and in our communities. Let us bring together everything we know and everything our forefathers had ever known about mediation, problem solving and peace-making prevail. There are ways to live and respond in which no one would be a loser. These will be revealed when everyone engages in heartfelt interchanges before irrevocable actions are undertaken. When we all restrain in the ways that are right for each of us and support one another to have the courage of peace-making then Jimara will blossom and become the cradle of peace in URR and the county at large.

Let us turn to the wisdom of our hearts and the intelligence of compassion. Let us meet with each other in neighbourhoods, places of worship, public and private forums, councils, schools, parks, homes, via Internet, across the miles and across national boundaries. By avoiding blame and without accusing each other and abstaining from making enemies, let us take all the time we need to enter into prayerful discussions with each other. Let us, the people of this constituency, with others in our region discover how we, in these unprecedented circumstances will find the ways to address these critical issues so that our children will live and foster other generations.

In conclusion, I want to enlighten you that the young people can’t be blinded with empty promises. The young people are willing and ready to determine their destiny in politics. They gave got to know all the tactics and mechanisms utilized by politicians to canvass votes when election is fast approaching. Therefore, politicians should be trustworthy, transparent and realistic in their policies and programs because they can’t fool any young person as far as our development is concerned.

Mama Salieu Jallow is a native of Sotuma Samba Koi.

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