In the past weeks calls have been made that have only been intensified in the past days. These calls are calls for people to get out and exercise their civic duty. Anyone not in denial will acknowledge the changing tides in the Gambian political landscape.
The ball is in your court as APRC supporters to deliver the change Gambians yearn for. Campaigners and ordinary citizens alike have appealed to you in their various statements to help institute a peaceful transition of power to a new democratic dispensation.
They have appealed to your sense of logic, that is to say the same promises made to you every election cycle are the same promises being made now, 22 years of undelivered promises do not need another five year extension for delivery. That is because they were and still are insincere promises.
Your fellow citizens have appealed to your sense of spirituality and piety, that what you support is unjust and have no standing in the realm of justice. The God that you cite as having decreed the anointing of your Excellency does not condone his oppressive hand.
Your compatriots have appealed to your CONSCIENCE. They asked that you reflect on the wrongs that have been committed, the seeds of discord that have been sowed to be reaped in the future; the future of your children and my children. What future do you want for your children, what kind of country are you going to have them inherit when you are no more? Is your conscience clear that they will have a better life than you do today when they are ready to raise children of their own?
Your countrymen have appealed to your HUMANITY and your ability to empathize to stand in the shoes of grieving families and look at things from their vantage point. Children who lost their fathers in the dark of night, women who did not know if to actually go into the traditional mourning period for their husbands because the authorities are issuing conflicting reports as to the fate or whereabouts of their loved ones. Fathers who braved the hot Gambian sun being kicked from one police station to the next in every corner of the country, teary eyed and heavy hearted looking for a missing son that the authorities deny holding. Sons who are enraged by their helplessness that they could do nothing about the torture and rape of their mothers openly admitted in court.
We understand that many things draw people to a person; that we all look for what appeals to us and use that to shape our decisions about life’s choices and who we ally with. We understand if you love Yaya as much as you do, but the greatest love anyone has is that of his children and parents, but even they are set right when they misstep. Everything Yaya has done and said thus far has never earned any condemnation from his supporters; his actions always have some explanation aimed at excusing his missteps.
One thing is undeniable; these are your fellow countrymen and women who are grieving for no just cause. They felt the blunt force of tyranny and are crying out for help. They do not seek blood; they do not seek lives in retaliation. They just want the nightmare to end; the nightmare of tyranny that has them scared. Listen to their cries, invoke the sense of community that our culture, values, and faith taught us. Stand by your neighbor and help wipe their tears. Help us turn a new chapter so that those still unsure of the fate of their loved ones can have closure. We are not raised to be selfish people, we are raised to hold each other up; that is the African spirit of Ubuntu (I am because we are), it is in all of us, do not suppress it for any reason. You may be more familiar with the spirit of Ubuntu in its Mandinka version; nee botta e taanyo mang bo, al beh leh mang bo! (You are not in the clear if your companion is not). In essence it is a quality that summons our greatest human virtues; COMPASSION and HUMANITY
Have no fear either, unlike Yaya Jammeh did in 1996, APRC as a party will not be banned from a new democratic process. The party can find a new leader and join the intellectual battle to make The Gambia better. How much more is Yaya Jammeh worth to you than The Gambia?
Give change a chance please, for the sake of our collective future vote for Adama Barrow, your ballot is secret and your vote is not for Adama, it is for the soul of The Gambia that we all love!
We hope you reconsider.