By Omar Bah
The Coalition West Coast Region Spokesperson, Essa Dampha has said that reports of a split between President Barrow and the United Democratic Party have been grossly exaggerated by critics who want the president to fail.
“As far as I am concerned, there is no misunderstanding between President Barrow and the UDP. I can vehemently tell you that he is working closely with his vice president and if there is any split between the two then it must have been today or this evening,” Dampha told The Standard yesterday.
“I want people to understand that Barrow will not at anytime betray the UDP or Ousainu Darboe because he is not a traitor. I personally believe that even if he wants to contest for elections again, he will go back to his UDP party. That is my opinion.”
Dampha, who also doubles as the government’s media aide, added: “I am very sure if there was any split between him and the UDP he would have sacked them by now because no genuine person will help his enemy destroy him. This is just a perception people have because they have the freedom to speak freely with no regard for what is true or false.”
Speaking further Dampha said even the allegation that the president was trying to bribe UDP NAMs was taken out of context, saying the president’s intention was to assist the parliamentarians and not otherwise as many people claimed, adding “it has never been the president’s intention to create division between him and the UDP.”
He said the Barrow Youth Movement for National Development should not be seen as a threat by any political party, saying the movement has no interest in politics.
“People should understand that to be a president is destined by God. It does not matter how much you may want someone to be a president; if God does not destine that person to be…it will never happen,” he added.
“Some of the critics just want to blackmail Gambians by portraying the president as a bad person. Any democratic government would want to entertain criticism but it has to be done positively and honestly. I want to call on the so-called critics to criticize positively because as far as we are concerned, the president is not deviating from his mandate and I think he should be left alone so that he can concentrate,” he stressed.
He said there are good things happening under the leadership of President Barrow but people are not talking about it.
“Electricity is far better now compared to previous years, tourism is booming and there are other infrastructural projects launched by the government, but no one is talking about it. I believe people should put their political differences and selfish interest aside. This is not the right time for politics. I want to take this opportunity to call on all Gambians to join the president in Farafenni Monday for the launching of the bridge,” he added.