At a press conference at his home yesterday, Ousainou Darboe said: “The UDP has been committed, since its founding, to the ideals of promoting peace and security in this country. The UDP is not a party that will jeopardise peace and security in this country. We submitted an application to the police on the 19th July for a permit to hold a rally at Ebony Junction which was supposed to take place on 9th August 2014 just to give them enough time. Solo Sandeng was asked to pick up the permit on 7th August and because we did not have enough time to carry out publicity we asked for the permit not to be issued. On 11th August we submitted another application for a permit to use a public address system at a rally to specifically celebrate the 18th anniversary of the founding of the party. However, we received a letter from the office of IGP saying that the condition of the road linking to the main road and the diversion of the traffic will cause difficulties to motoritsts if held at Ebony Junction, Serekunda Central. We then rescheduled the rally to Cedar Club in Serekunda on Staurday August 30th but the application was rejected for security reasons.
“The UDP is not a security threat to this country. We hold the deputy IGP Gibba who is sitting for the substantive holder of the position for this decision. He is a man who has not hidden his revulsion and hatred for opposition parties especially UDP. He has misused his position to deny us permit on flimsy grounds. We are counting down to 2016 and the only way we can do that is through cell and venue meetings which has been undermined by this decision which seeks to sow the seeds of discontent and disunity.
He added: “The celebration of our 18th anniversary is an important day because this is the day Gambians were given new hope. This is the day Gambians were given hope of true democracy. This is the day Gambians were given hope that the issue of unemployment and agriculture will be given the desired and deserved attention. To deny us to hold rallies is unconstitutional and unacceptable to us. We have every right to exercise our rights. We have both legal and political options to explore and we will use one or all the options when we come to that situation. We have a right as a party to disseminate our information and policies to our supporters and that should not be denied on flimsy grounds because the UDP is committed to the peace and security of this country.”]]>