‘Political tensions in Senegal could threaten Gambia’s stability’
By Cherno Omar Bobb
A US-based Gambian security analyst and social commentator has said the political tension in Senegal could have a serious implication on Gambia’s stability.
Modou Lamin Faye urged President Adama Barrow to engage the African Union and ECOWAS to broker peace between Macky Sall and Ousman Sonko.
The Francophone country has seen growing uncertainty over whether its current president will indeed step down when his second term ends in 2024.
Seattle-based Faye said: “If there is any kind of instability in Senegal, it is going to be a triple threat to Gambia’s own stability. For these reasons, Gambians, the government, the media and Civil Society Organisations should not turn a blind eye to what is happening in Dakar.”
Faye said President Barrow should use the current situation in Senegal to quickly facilitate the handing over of the country’s security forces.
“Being an independent state or country takes much more than the eye can see, which also means that you take care of your own security issues, have training facilities with proper training tools and constantly look for ways to evolve from how you were colonised to a better structured system that fits the current and future security needs. Being an ally with a neighbouring country or other countries is a very common norm but leaving your country at a vulnerable state is degrading and disrespectful to us as a country,” Faye said patriotically.
Debunking demeaning perception, he says claims that The Gambia does not need a military because it is surrounded by Senegal and their military will protect “us from external threats, is disturbing”.
“Heavily relying on external military forces to safeguard our nation is like depending on someone to provide food and shelter for your family,” he affirmed, saying: “When there is misunderstanding, they will teach us a lesson by cutting off all supplies or support given to us. We will forever be their puppet and always look down upon. They can bully us anytime they want, they will not hesitate to open their borders for an enemy if they were to invade us. A typical example would be how Russia uses Belarus as an attack point in Ukraine and the examples go on and on. In other words, if the next Senegalese president does not get along with president Barrow’s administration or future administrations just like how former president Jammeh did not get along with their government during his regime and then now what? Oops!”
Faye, with analytical mind, queried the security situation between both countries: “The questions now becomes, if Senegalese government cannot get their house in order, how do we expect them to get our house in order? If Senegalese government cannot protect themselves internally, Casamance to be precise, for as long as we have known Senegal as a country, why should we be so comfortable to leave the security of the Gambian people in their hands? I urge every Gambian, especially the current government, to wake up, stop being naïve, and understand that The Gambia is not immune to the same threats that other countries are facing like terrorist attacks at malls or other public places.”
He urged the government to consider his analysis and assessments as real and very serious and not as just an opinion, before it is too late.
“I have mapped out security plans that our organisation will follow to help support the new security reform,” he said. “I urge Barrow’s administration to open its doors to Gambians to work together towards the development of The Gambia. Besides, not everyone that reaches out to help is an enemy, has hidden agenda, or wants somebody’s job.”