Saturday, February 4

Latrikunda German Alkaloship Crisis Still Unresolved

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Momodou Darboe

uding The mayor of the Kanifing municipality has said the contentious nature of the Latrikunda German Alkaloship succession issue has made it impossible for KMC to resolve it immediately whilst dropping hint that the crisis could draw out to the year’s end.

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The chief mediator in the acrimonious Latrikunda succession crisis told The Standard two months ago that KMC was to decide the issue in August after futile efforts at amicably resolving the standoff.

In late May, KMC tasked yard owners to resort to voting as a way of putting an end to the stalemate but chief mediator Dembo Sanneh sometime ago informed The Standard that this process has been suspended as the council was determined to stamp its authority.

As per the Local Government Act, the minister of local government is empowered to appoint an Alkalo in consultation with divisional governor or chiefs.

But in a conversation with this medium, KMC mayor Talib Bensouda described the Latrikunda German Alkaloship stalemate as a delicate issue that the council is still carefully studying.

According to Mayor Bensouda, the Latrikunda German succession problem is fraught with lot of complications but expressed hope that the community will end up coming together.

“Because it’s one community, one family, the tension was high, so that was why we gave them time and then hopefully before the end of the year, it should be resolved,” he revealed.

He explained that the five succession problems that he had been confronted with have all proved hard nuts to crack.

“It is a delicate situation[succession]but I try to remove myself from it. I try to allow the elders of the community to come up with a solution,” he added. “I’m an unfortunate mayor in the sense that during my time, five Alkalolu passed away. But also fortunately, out of the five Alkalolu that have passed away, four of them have seen an amicable solution at the end. Sometimes back and forth but we had amicable solutions that ended up uniting the community.”

Bensouda said KMC is still keeping its policy of dealing with complications arising from succession problem.

“Whenever there are complications, our policy is that we delay the process until community tension calms and we revisit and try to find a solution and ensuring that the traditions are maintained. I try to stay away,” he stated.

The Latrikunda German succession squabbles started in the community’s main mosque in May this year when the Imam unilaterally endorsed one Pa Omar Faal as the replacement to the late Alkalo. This has caused a rebellion on the part of Suwaibou Faal whose father was the last to reign as Alkalo.

Consequently, the community was thrown into a state of dilemma and confusion and since then, no successor has been identified as feuding parties could not still fine a common ground.

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