‘Witch-hunting UDP mayors, chairmen will be resisted’

Opposition United Democratic Party leader has warned President Adama Barrow that any attempts to establish a commission of inquiry to seek an injunction against UDP mayors and chairmen will be met with strong resistance.

Ousainu Darboe was reacting to unofficial media reports that the government is about to set up a commission into the conduct of all local government councils following weeks of councils’ meeting with the Assembly FPAC on their financial dealings.

But addressing a UDP meeting marking the victory celebration of Kombo South MP, Kebba K Barrow on Saturday in Gunjur, Kombo South, UDP leader Ousainu Darboe expressed strong concerns over social media reports suggesting that the government has established a commission of inquiry into the councils.

“But President Adama Barrow, we want to warn you that if you attempt to interfere with the Supreme Court judgement in the KM mayor Talib Bensouda and 52 others against the Attorney General, you are making a big mistake. We will not allow that in this country because you lost on that front. You think you can come through the backdoor and try to really interfere with the local government administration. It is not going to happen here and if you and your people think that you can get interim orders from a nonsensical commission to stop our mayors and chairmen from performing their duties then you are calling for trouble,” Darboe warned.

Mr further stated that the way and manner the country is moving under Barrow is “scary” and every Gambian has a duty to protect the constitution because “nobody, not even the president” has the right to override a decision of the Supreme Court.

“If those who call themselves researchers in local government administration mislead you to constitute a commission in an act of desperation then you should be assured that you are calling for trouble. We don’t want to entertain violence in this country but we are not also going to accept the government to continue pushing down our throat on things that are unjustifiable. That will not happen,” Darboe tensely added.

He said the UDP will resist and insist on the government doing what the constitution calls for to be done.

“You cannot try to set up a commission now and, in any case, Mr President, you were elected to carry out major reforms in this country and those reforms include local government systems. Why is it that seven years on you have not done that? What are the faults? Mr President, if you think that there is anything wrong in local government administration and it needs your attention, I thought you would have appointed a team of experts to advise you rather than going on this nonsensical witch-hunting. But we are waiting for you and this is not political talk,” he added.

The UDP leader added that the Gambian people must show President Barrow and his people during the local government elections that they have rejected them.

He said Gambia is “half- paralyzed” and if Gambians allow the NPP to control the local governments, they will milk their resources like they are doing with government elephant projects.

“We admitted that we made a mistake during the presidential election for failing to send people to the collation centres but this time around, we will send people to every collation centre and we are not going to allow anybody to cook up results. That is not going to happen. We will make sure that all the votes are properly counted and that our numbers tally with that of the IEC or else we will announce our own results and I am sure the Gambian people will take our results,” Darboe warned.

Source: Standard

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