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Spinning is an art



By Njundou Drammeh, child rights activist and social commentator

The chief State spin doctor, Dr. Sankareh, is not good at spinning. First impressions count and there is often no second chance to make a second impression. In two press releases he dropped clangers. In the latest, relating to the 60 mosques per year, the President and BYM, he issued a long press release which I think is weak in content, devoid of truth, deceitful, poor as a damage control device and utterly unnecessary as it didn’t refute what it intended to do.

We heard the President. He.was on record. I listened to the speech on GRTS TV….. He said he would build or construct 60 boreholes, 60 gardens and 60 mosques in the year; 5 boreholes, 5 gardens, 5 mosques per month. He said the money is already in hand, “in the country”. In very audible Mandinka. The President didn’t mentioned his Borrow Youth Movement. He used the “I” statement. He spoke about the project with a certain glee, to the applause of the cheering crowd These were unambiguous statements. In clear Mandinka.

If Dr. Sankareh wants to go to great to impress the Government, to be the master spin doctor,.then he ought to be doing more intensive,.careful, better back ground checking of the facts in the open and which he is privy to. Then he can couch his press releases in a language which is devoid of literary obfuscation, high falutin, flowery words but convincing and artfully woven to “confuse” the people about the other truth,.to get a buy in on the government’s, the President’s, statements which are criticised. It requires a man or woman skilful in the art of spinning to do great damage control. Dr. Sankareh does not seem to be good at that art.

To save himself from these embarassments, Dr. Sankareh must advice his employers to be measured in what they say, to be unambiguous in what they say, to know that they would be accountable for what say. In this age of ICT, none can hide, none can go unrecorded. You want to deny what you say or do, the records will be played.

And none is opposed to mosque building by private citizens or CSOs. It is not just the business of the State or the functions of the President to build mosques. We have a political contract with the Government and mosque building is not included in thar contract. The Government has its blueprint, the National Development Plan, and mosque building is not one of the 8 strategic priority areas or even mentioned therein. The raison detre of the State is clear and mosque building is not part of.

Let citizens and NGOs build mosques or churches. Not the Government

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