By Yanks Darboe
The audio speech of President Adama Barrow being circulated on social media from his meeting with UDP members at the State House over the weekend of October 6-7, 2018; sounds more dictatorial than Democratic, for a man who claimed to have led a Democratic Party and wants to lead the same.
The President could be heard threatening that any party member who dares to contest against him on the party’s nomination ticket for Presidency in the 2020 Presidential election, should be deemed as plotting a coup d’etat against him, or plotting his overthrow or betrayal. Such threats are quite simply unacceptable and dictatorial, which is the least expected of a democratic leader!
It further proves the President’s diminishing respect and appreciation for the basic tenets of the democratic principles of the UDP, or power had inebriated him into forgetting the process that ascended him to the leadership of the UDP in 2016 and the coalition ticket.
Otherwise, he ought to understand that he cannot stand at the State House and declare himself the Presidential candidate of the UDP for the next Presidential election in 2020, and further have the audacity to threaten any party member, who dares to oppose him to that entitlement of his, as plotting to overthrow him or undermine him.
The UDP is not a Barrow party but a Democratic Party, whose Party flag bearer and party executives are elected through a democratic process by the party members. Barrow cannot just bypass that process by simply declaring himself the Presidential candidate of the party for the next Presidential election and impose such wishes on the Party. That is quite simply unacceptable and does not conform with the party’s principles! It’s a Democratic process not dictatorship.
If Barrow wants to stand as candidate in the next election, he needs to declare such interest by applying and contesting for the position, just like anyone who wants to contest for the same. He cannot just stand at the State House and decree that he will lead and all should follow! Who does he think he is, the almighty god of UDP.
I seriously believe that Barrow is losing his head! Power is truly messing up with his cognitive senses. The UDP was not formed by Adama Barrow and was not formed for Adama Barrow alone to lead, but for every Gambian who believed in the democratic ideals of the party. There is no prohibition clause in the party’s constitution that prevents any party member from contesting for the leadership of the party.
Hence, the President’s pronouncements are quite simply unacceptable, baseless and undemocratic; which contravenes the party’s traditions and ideals.
Barrow further forgot that he had resigned from the party, to lead the coalition on an independent candidate ticket. He ought to reapply to join the party first, before he qualify the eligibility requirement to contest for Presidential flag-bearer of the party!