By Omar Bah
The United Democratic Party and Gambia Action Party have issued statements calling on the people of Sanyang to allow the law to take its course but also warned that the government must ‘sincerely’ address the root causes of violent events in the country.
The UDP said: “It is with great sadness and trepidation that we have learnt about the tragic killing of Gibril Ceesay, a Sanyang native, as a result of an alleged robbery attempt. The United Democratic Party extends sincere condolences to the family of the deceased and prays for the speedy recovery of all those injured in the process. The party calls for calm and demands that an immediate, thorough and impartial investigation by the government be conducted into the alleged incident as well as the resulting upheaval.”
The UDP further appealed to the youths of Sanyang, and Kombo South in general, to express their grievances in a peaceful manner and to allow the law to take its course.
“This isn’t always easy to do, but it is the best way to ensure that peace prevails and true justice is carried out. Incidents elsewhere teach us that the security forces must always exercise restraint and be mindful of basic rights in carrying out their duties. In the same vein, the government must sincerely address the root causes of these violent events to prevent recurrences. As it is obvious that these issues are beyond Sanyang, it must revisit the findings and recommendations of commissions which addressed the many challenges currently facing The Gambia’s coastal communities,” the party said.
The UDP said the government should take bold and progressive decisions that must finally be taken with a view to providing jobs to the country’s youth and women, while at the same time protecting our environment and natural resources from unregulated exploitation.
In a statement signed by its SG, Musa Ousainou Yali Batchilly, GAP said: “The Gambia Action Party is concerned about the security threats surrounding the nation as our citizens continued to die on account of the government’s negligence towards the Security Sector Reform (SSR) and misplaced priority to safeguard the people.”
“As a result, when a nation’s security measures collapsed, crimes and destruction as well as deaths must be an expectant outcome.
We learned of the Sanyang incident with sadness and call on the government to ensure the lives and properties of our people are safe and secured without power tussles to avoid recurrence. We call on the youth to strain themselves and pursue justice without further escalation of ravishment,” the party said.
The party reminded the government to revisit the so-called security agreement with Senegal.
“Our bilateral strategy with Senegal must be based on economic growth and revival but no other way round. GAP has gratitude beyond words and would work with the Senegalese government on mutual benefits. We urge everyone to remain law abiding and ensure their democratic rights are exercised in December without violence or destruction to people’s properties,” the party added.