By Omar Bah
Lamin Chamang Komma, a US-based Gambian civil society leader, has urged Gambian opposition leaders to reject calls to sideline UDP and unite against President Adama Barrow.
A regular analyst For The People By The People weekly television show, Musa Jeng has called on the PDOIS, CA, GDC, GFA and GMC to initiate a coalition to dismantle what he described as political insurgency created by the NPP and UDP.
However, reacting to Musa Jeng’s comments, Komma who is a member of the UDP Minnesota branch, said: “It is futile for any genuine Gambian to suggest a Coalition of opposition parties without the UDP. The opposition should instead consider President Barrow as the common enemy.”
Komma added: “If there is anyone to blame, it has to be President Barrow. No genuine Gambian should sideline the UDP in the fight to deliberate this country. This is a party that has sacrificed lives to ensure change in this country. They stood against the most brutal dictator of our lifetime.”
Weeks before the 2016 president election, a group of opposition politicians rarely seen together, reached an agreement to form a coalition which was led by Adama Barrow.
However, with the December 2021 election fast approaching, many Gambians who voted for him say there has been little progress and many abuses of power in the country since he took over. Some even draw comparisons with Jammeh’s governance style, and worry that he too may use constitutional changes to rule for decades.
Komma said the discussion should now be how to remove Barrow.
“But this cannot happen if you sideline the biggest opposition in this country. The UDP has without any doubt proven to be the main opposition party in this country.
“The party has stood defiantly against Yahya Jammeh which resulted in the perishing of several of its supporters and they never gave up the fight. For anyone to claim the UDP is the cause of the current mess in the country is unacceptable and unfair to say the least,” he said.
He added: “We must be honest enough to speak the truth. The only enemy to the peaceful existence of this country is Adama Barrow. Our change was hijacked by him and the evidence is his party forming an alliance with the APRC.”
He said Gambians should be wary of false prophets who come disguised as “independent analysts”.
“UDP is the majority that booted out the dictatorship and the same majority shall decide the December polls,” he added.
Komma urged Gambians to vet the different political parties in the country to avoid voting a party that will continue Jammeh or Barrow’s legacy.
He condemned the continued presence of Ecomig forces, especially the over 625 soldiers deployed into the country by Senegal.
“I challenge President Barrow to explain to Gambians why Senegal alone has about 625 troops in the country and who is paying these soldiers? Barrow should tell us what is happening? We cannot continue seeing our country being occupied by Senegalese troops. If Senegal is really serious about helping Gambia they should stop using our people as medical tourists and assist us build our health system,” Komma said.
He said hundreds of Gambians are traveling to Senegal for medical treatment, spending millions there. “Our president and his close associates don’t care about these things. This is what the critics of the UDP should have been talking about. But the hypocrisy in this country is beyond imagination,” he said.