By Siaka Jatta, Political adviser to President Adama Barrow
Kindly accept this statement as an expression of my utter dismay and indignation at the recent comments made by one Madi Ceesay, a national assembly member for the United Democratic Party. The comments ascribed to Mr. Ceesay, whom I deliberately refuse to address with the right honorific befitting of a respectable member of parliament – HonourableNational Assembly Member, where he was openly calling for the illegal overthrew of a democratically elected government are indeed shameful and regrettable.
I call on Madi Ceesay to resign in honour of preserving the integrity of our Honourable National Assembly. His comments are treasonous and highly demeaning of the National Assembly, which is why I am also calling on the National Assembly Standing Committee on Ethics to take disciplinary actions against him.
No respectable National Assembly Member, who is well au fait with his constitutional mandate and responsibilities will ever associate, not even remotely, with an illegal attempt to dislodge a government that was overwhelming elected by the people of The Gambia. The Gambian people have spoken when they decided in 2016 to give President Adama Barrow a five-year mandate to rule the country.
Moreover, the 1997 Constitution of the Gambia, which is the supreme law of the land, is quite clear when it states ambiguously in Section 63 that ‘‘the term of an elected president shall, subject sections (3) and (6), be for a term of five (5) years’’.
The government of The Gambia will defend the supremacy of the constitution. Equally, all genuine Gambians, who are true to promoting the ideals of constitutionalism, the rule of the law, and sincerely care about consolidating the good governance and democratic gains so far registered should have no qualms adhering to the tenets of the law in spirit and letter.
At this juncture, I refer Madi Ceesay to draw wisdom from the recent comments made by his party leader, veteran lawyer Ousainou Darboe, who unreluctanly distanced himself from the illegal cause of the so-called ‘’3-years movement’’. He told a local news site recently that ‘‘I just stated what the laws’’ referring to earlier comments he made insisting that Barrow must serve five years.
Madi’s renegade diversion from the position of his party leader party points to two things: 1) that there’s no disciplined in the party structures and rogue elements like Madi have become uncontrollable; or 2) that the influence of the party leader in the party is fast dwindling.