Sunday, December 10

Letters to the Editor

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Violent electoral impasse in Ivory coast

and Guinea. Where are the plaster saints?


Dear editor,

Are political junkies like me following the latest election crisis in Ivory Coast, manifesting greater concern for the world than what had prevailed in The Gambia in 2016? In their weekend presidential election it was reported that 60% of the registered voters refused to collect their voter’s cards and only 10% of eligible voters cast their votes in what was a nationwide protest of the illegitimacy of incumbent President Alassane Ouattara to run for a third term. In his infringement of the nation’s two-term constitutional limitation in office of elected presidents, the Ouattara government has killed over 30 peaceful protesters, reviving memories of over 3000 killed in a previous election impasse; and worse still, he has been declared a landslide winner in an election marred by rigging and under the supervision of a corrupt electoral commission.

The major opposition parties that boycotted the whole unconstitutional ballot and enjoy the sympathy of the majority of Ivorians have announced their rejection of the results and their formation of a parallel interim government with their first objective of organizing legal elections for eligible candidates.

The outlaw government of Ouattara is threatening to use his familiar tactics of violently suppressing any attempt to challenge his authority.

The EU, USA and even France are all together in condemning Ouattara for transgressing the constitution of the Ivorians and strictly urged him to respect the laws of his country.

Oddly, we haven’t heard any statement from the UN Security Council or the AU and ECOWAS who were the first to synchronize their efforts in 2016 for a hastily-drafted resolution advocating for the APRC government to respect the constitution of the Gambia and step down or else faced a military onslaught by subregional forces. They were, indeed, stupidly predisposed to wage war in the Gambia to prevent the government from infringing the nation’s constitution and to further fend off any political violence that never started in the first instance.

Can anyone therefore believe that after the death of so many Ivorians in the hands of an illegal government with greater prospects of more people being killed in the days ahead, our subregional leaders, namely the invalid Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria and low-IQ French puppet Macky Sall of Senegal in particular, are all sitting on their rumps watching Ouattara on his deadly rampage?

I hope legal bounty hunters like US Ambassador-at large Stephen J Rapp is taking note for  a possible future “hybrid court”!

But on a serious note, is it true that Macky Sall doesn’t want to say anything against his Ivorian colleague because he plans to try the same unconstitutional coup of running for a third term in Senegal’s next presidential election or has his unlawful intervention and continued meddling in Gambian politics since 2016 resulted in a restraining lesson on his political adventurism? Time alone would tell.

In a recent interview when asked what ECOWAS was doing about the political crisis in Ivory Coast and Guinea Conakry, our foreign minister Dr. Mamadou Tangara replied that events in those nations were internal matters not for foreign intervention. I didn’t know whether to cry out of sympathy for poor Africa or laugh at our unsophisticated government.

However, the unsustainable political crisis in Guinea Conakry, another constitutional contravention by President Conde with no hope of abating has equally been ignored by our plaster saints and “constitution enforcers”.

In both countries therefore, one is inclined to conclude that our brain-dead and amoral ECOWAS leaders are virtually gearing us up for prospective military coups or civil wars. In the absence of ECOWAS playing their expected role of forcing Ouattara and Conde to do what is right by stepping aside and letting the wishes of their people prevail, I guess a peaceful coup would remain the best and only option for stability.

Back in the Gambia I think we could, next year face a similar volatile political situation where the voters will battle for two options. Those who would want to retain the current status quo and do whatever it takes to espouse its continuity and the opposing forces who will settle for nothing other than regime change.

Macky Sall was and still is deeply involved in what politically, economically and militarily exist here since 2016 and without doubt he will invest heavily to see the maintenance rather than replacement of the current leadership of President Adama Barrow. I also strongly believe that the Senegalese president has no principles other than to pursue his selfish political and economic interest with an insatiable greed he would feed by any ungodly means. President Adama Barrow seems to depend on him in everything he does, knowing that it will only be through Senegal’s support that he could fulfill his prophesied “15 years in power”.

Our ongoing Security-Sector Reform may according to the architects not end for the next decade or two that will until then need us to keep ECOMIG and the Senegalese presidential guard in The Gambia for many elections ahead.

If Macky can remain indifferent to the horrors in Ivory Coast and Guinea Conakry and even seems to support his partners in crime, he could next year treat the Gambia worse.

Let us also not forget that, there are judases in the Gambia who would invite and encourage any intimidation he might try against the Gambian people, using his troops illegally occupying the nation and on a dubious arrangement of providing our president with his personal security. Come 2021, will these foreign troops be oriented to support any winner of the general election? If so, should we expect to see some foreign troops provide security for key opposition leaders going into the election months, in the same manner they now do for President Barrow? If not, then the opposition is effed, big time.

Samsudeen Sarr