By Omar Bah
The Banjul, Kanifing, West Coast and Lower River Region mayors and chairmen who have emerged victorious in the weekend elections have urged President Adama Barrow to end all “hostilities” directed at them and their councils and work for the interest of the people and the country.
Re-elected Banjul mayor Rohey Lowe stated: “I want to assure the president that I am prepared to work with him in the interest of Banjul. We expect him to open his doors for us to work together. We should put all our political differences aside and work together. In fact, I will personally go to the State House and discuss with him to put aside all these unnecessary hostilities behind us and work as a family. We need each other today more than we ever did. We are not going to develop as a country if one council succeeds and the government fails.”
Kanifing’s Talib Bensouda stated: “I want to advise the president to try and unite the country and see the councils led by the opposition as partners in development. We may have different ideas as far as our political ideologies are concerned but when it comes to national development, we are all trying to build our country. So, as the leader, we urge him to stop the attacks and the divisiveness and make it a mandate to unite this country and help us move in one direction.
“My victory is a validation of my first term. We have a vibrant and energetic party that gives us all the support but if you are elected and fail to deliver you may even lose your party’s support, so this second mandate is a validation of my work at KMC. But I am also aware of the fact that there are many people who didn’t vote for us and I want to assure them that I will be a leader for every resident of KM,” he said.
The chairman-elect for Brikama Area Council, Yankuba Darboe, stated: “We obviously want to work with the government. There is nothing like representing our personal or party interests. We represent the interest of the people of the West Coast and they are the same people that the government is serving. So, I see no reason why the government shouldn’t work with us in the interest of those people.
“The people of West Coast have made their decision to entrust us to achieve their development goals and to be able to do that we should work with the government they have elected to represent them. We will do everything possible to ensure that we unite the region because we don’t have issues with anybody. Our campaign was agenda-driven and I was elected by all tribes and religions of WCR and I am committed to serve all of them without fear or favour. I want to reiterate that we will certainly do our utmost best to make sure we fulfill our campaign pledges and objectives,” he added.
The re-elected chairman of Mansa Konko Area Council, Landing Sanneh, said he was ready to work closely with the government to develop his region.
“I am committed to work with the government and I hope they will open their doors for us to engage and share ideas on how to make LRR a better place for all. I don’t have a choice but to work with the government because there is no other way around. I am very delighted at my re-election and I recommit myself to continue serving the interest of all residents of LRR irrespective of party or religious affiliation. My second mandate will serve as a challenge for me to complete the tremendous work I have started,” he concluded.
Meanwhile in a message issued by State House last evening, President Barrow congratulated all winners of the mayoral and chairpersonship elections and thanked all Gambians and the IEC for “the peaceful and successful conduct” of the elections.
“To the losers, better luck next time. Now that we have completed this cycle of elections, I urge all Gambians to now focus on national development and solidify the peace and stability of the country,” he reiterated.
Meanwhile, both Ebou Faye of Banjul and Bakary Badjie have issued statements congratulating and wishing well the re-elected mayors.