By Buba Gagigo
The Coalition of Progressive Gambians (CoPG), have postponed their planned November 11th protest, despite their demands not being met by the Government of the Gambia; saying the government has agreed to open doors to dialogue.
The postponement came following two days of meetings the pressure group had with the Supreme Islamic Council, Peace Network, and representatives of the Government.
At a press conference held at the headquarters of the Supreme Islamic Council in Kanifing, attended by stakeholders from the pressure group, SIC, The Peace Network, and the Government, the following statement was read and late released to the gathered press by Dawda Jallow, Secretary to the Supreme Islamic Council:
“As of today, we have come to consensus on the following:
A. Government has assured that they are open and willing to dialogue with The Coalition of Progressive Gambians.
B. Gambia Supreme Islamic Council and Peace Network to continue leading the engagements between The Coalition of Progressive Gambians and the Government of The Gambia.
In view of this, the general public is hereby informed that the planned November 11, 2022, demonstration is postponed until further notice.”
Speaking at the press conference, the president of the Supreme Islamic Council, Sheikh Essa Darboe, reiterated the Council’s desire to foster peace through dialogue.
“Islamic Council is concerned about the peace in this country, when we had about the peaceful demonstration, we were worried because they said nationwide. That was too big for us, and also the negative comments we hear from some individuals. We know demonstration is some kind of solution, but there are other means through which we can solve the problem and that is dialogue and consultation”
The Chairman of the Coalition of Progressive Gambians, Seedy Cham, also spoke at the press conference. He told the gathered press that the authorities started engaging them a while ago, and one of the things they advocate for is peace.
“They started engaging us for a while. Today is the 5th day. Sometimes we are here from afternoon to night to discuss peace. And it is peace that we advocate for. We have now agreed to postpone the planned November Protest. We are assured that the government will address our demands. That is why we postpone the protest until further notice.”
On behalf of the ministry of information, Ebrima Sankareh, explains that the Government of the Gambia is a party to the agreement with the coalition of Progressive Gambians, without disclosing any details of the agreement.
The Coalition of Progressive Gambians, which planned to protest on 11th November, was demanding the government address the high cost of living, promote transparency, and provide better services for the country, among others.