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Manjang: The One Who Dared To Be Different


By Alagie Saidy-Barrow

I don’t know Manjang and I have never directly interacted with him. Like many people, I only came to know of him through his hiring at SSHFC. From the various thieves and thief-helpers that came before the Janneh Commission, I thought the SSHFC was a poisoned chalice for the many spineless directors that oversaw its destruction over the evil era of Jammeh. From what I heard, the institution was on its knees when Manjang was appointed to take charge. And for the life of me, I thought all was going well over there! But someone somewhere had a different thinking and so they decided he is better suited to something else he knows little about.

It was just a few days ago that I wrote about untamed obedience to authority. You know, where senior civil servants accept to be treated anyhow by those in power or authority. Apparently, Manjang is no ordinary senior civil servant or rather was no ordinary civil servant. We know that Yaya Jammeh recruited people to come and run whole ministries when they have zero experience in even managing a table canteen of confetti. We know that evil and rapist Yaya Jammeh arbitrarily moved people from one ministry to another and I don’t know about you, but I have never heard so much as a whimper from any of them. Whether motivated by fear or lack of spine, no one should take up a position in a field you don’t feel you will effectively serve your people if service to the people is your persuasion. Sadly, with the obsession over titles and addiction to government jobs, some of our people have allowed themselves to be used anyhow, anywhere and at anytime! They have allowed themselves to be untamely obedient. They call it service to nation even if they know they cannot deliver said service!

I commend Manjang for daring to be different. Where many settled for mediocrity, he chose to be excellent. Where many allowed themselves to be pawns in a political chess game, he chose to be the King and took the highway. Where others succumb to desperation for titles and government jobs, he chose to forgo it all and stand alone. Resignation from senior positions in government is rare except when we bag an international appointment. Our people allow themselves to be played like a yoyo and get bounced from one place to another without as much as a cough.

Bravo to Manjang for daring to be different. I am sure many will be happy that you are no longer at the SSHFC but going by the numbers you posted, even folks like me that cannot count to twenty without taking off our shoes, are proud of you. That is what I call delivery. That you put them out in the public space says a lot. When I grow up, I want to like you and not accept anyone to play me like a yoyo! Go well sir and thank you for daring to be different.

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