In a statement dated 28th November 2022, the Gambia Democratic Congress has reacted to the recent comments made by a Senegalese Member of Parliament.
In a video making the rounds on social media, a Senegalese parliamentarian, Hon. Oumar Cisse, registered his heartfelt appreciation to the Senegalese President Macky Sall for constructing a bridge in The Gambia at Farafenni.
He also registered his fear that many Senegalese people living in the Southern Senegal_Gambia (Cassamance) borde acquired Gambian voter cards during the 2021 Presidential election, by which he expressed fear that many Senegalese might be lost to Gambia due to the easy access of Gambian documents.
Hon. Oumar Cisse described the Gambia’s national document process as ‘porous’ and ‘easy to acquire’ because almost all of his people got it through the provision of two witnesses.
Meanwhile, Hon. Mamma Kandeh, the party leader of the Gambia Democratic Congress has reacted to the claims of MP Cisse. The reaction, which is titled ‘Our Sovereignty Our Problem’ reads:
“Sequel to the video making the rounds from the Senegalese’s National Assembly, where one Hon. Oumar Cisse a member of Parliament in Senegal registering his heartfelt appreciation to the Senegalese President Macky Sall for constructing a bridge in The Gambia at Fara fenni. In the same vein, registering his fear that many Senegalese people living in Cassamances bordering Gambia acquired Gambia voter cards during the Presidential election, which he is afraid that many Senegalese’s might be lost to Gambia due to the easy access of Gambian documents. He described our national document process as porous and easy to acquire because almost all of his people got it through the provision of two witnesses.
“I write in my capacity as a concerned Gambian and a leader of a political party with utmost disappointments as these remarks cannot go unchallenged at all. The Farafenni Bridge was built through the Gambian taxpayers and no other nationality or government should take pride in or ownership. The Gambia is a sovereign state like any other country in the world, as those that fought for our independence gave us the fervent mandate to internally dictate our own affairs. This video is misleading and embarrassing as such comments are backed with the fact that our sovereign had been insulted on numerous occasions and no strong stance has been taken and now the route is taking its strongest shape.
“The Gambia is a country where our suffrage, the right to vote is generally limited to citizens of our country who are entrusted to elect public officials into office and with the right to run for an elected office.
“I am so much worried with the highly intrusion of other nationalities in our affairs as it is not setting a good precedent . The tendency to engage in political monopolization and cultural assimilation is weakened as our sovereign wealth and territory has been on a one way relationship which contributed to our growth in poverty. The country is at the crossroad and leaders must be willing and able to change the status quo as beside the hardship the ordinary Gambians are being sanctioned with, is enough to cry foul. We are primary actors in the global economy and autonomous with our political sovereignty and self-rule and these should have no room of penetration or negotiation as our supreme authority lies in our people.
“I frankly confess that the principal masses of the population are discontent with the present system and to my convictions are either those entrusted to take the bold stand to subdue and suppress or the nation will perish. We love this country so deeply that we wish it will be the best version of itself. We are faced with a great threat to our sovereignty and safely I can allude that the worst will persist if we fail to do what is right for The Gambia and her people.
“Finally, I call on the government to recognize that we are confronted with a sovereign problem and actions are needed to regain the lost trust. Our relationship with every country is important so long as it is based on respect for sovereign and mutual interest.
“In the service of the Gambia I shall remain,” it ends.