President Adama Barrow has told chiefs and Akalolou of the West Coast Region that every opposition to his government is opposition to them.
“I am the head of the Gov’t as president. However, I cannot develop The Gambia alone. I need partners. Who are my partners- My minister for local government is here. He is my employee. He is in charge of local government. Anything from me [President] goes through him to the Governor, to the Chiefs and then to the Alkalolou. You (referring to Alkalolou and Chiefs) are part of the government. Therefore, every opposition in this country is your opposition. So, you people (referring to Alkalolou and Chiefs) opposition are your opposition. You are the government. So, if you are in government, anyone opposing you, how can you help that person in return? It is like a betrayal to oneself,” he said.
While urging the local rulers to be loyal to him, Barrow said no matter how knowledgeable one is; or status he or she attends, it is useless without loyalty.
“No matter how much higher your knowledge and status are, it is useless if you are not loyal. They are useless [knowledge and status]. Loyalty is above them. Your positions are key. I once told the Chiefs, your position is for life, if you know yourself, know your work, know how to behave and you are loyal to the government you belong to, you are a lifetime chief. The same goes for the Alkalolou- it is a position of honour, it is an important position and leadership. So, I think it’s a lifetime appointment,” Barrow said.
He also appealed to traditional rulers to join him in developing the nation saying, “I am appealing to the Alkalolou and Chiefs to continue working with the government to develop this nation. No one will develop this nation except us Gambians. It’s only us who can develop this nation.”
The President made these remarks on Saturday at a meeting with local government authorities at the State House. The meeting was attended by the Minister for Local Government and Lands, the Governor, Chief, Alkalolou of West Coast Region, and Chairman of Brikama Area Council, et all.