The problem in the Gambia can be narrowed down to the type of state and nation that was built by the British invaders, in the name of exploitation and enlightenment. The British built a state that would fail, once it may decide to secede from commonwealth rule of colonial panicles. They built a state that would fail to recognise its own potentials. A state that would always lack self-esteem and cannot realise it’s capabilities. A state that would always continue to succumb to the West and would never believe in potential and productive Gambians.
From colonial and invading suffocation, the foundation of Independence was laid. Different leaders of different times, fought tirelessly to achieve what is called ‘Independence ‘ for the betterment of all. Many lives were lost in those processes. Some could not have time for their families, because they put the nation first. That is the selfless Gambia we always and will always want. A Gambia that does not recognize groups and individuals, but all.
Since independence was achieved, the first government by Gambians themselves was established. What that government fails to do was to revisit the education system that was created by the British. They failed to build national awareness of nationhood and statehood. They failed to create strong institutions that would recognize the potentials of every Gambian and safeguard such capabilities. The role of the state became so confusing with the role of the Church, that the latter stops criticizing or talking of the ills of the former.
When the second administration became into power, a more household and personalize state was built. That government failed to protect the rights of many, if not all. The end justified the means for that government. That government failed to do or extend what the former administration failed to do so. Many lives were lost in this government and the press was censored just as it was done, in the first government.
Here’s the most terrifying and disheartening part in the history of the Gambia. The coalition led government came. That government was considered to restore all that was lost, but that government is on the verge of leading the Gambia into a complete failed state. Many who advocated for transparency and accountability, are either fed or appointed into office so as the stop doing so. Gambia for the past 24 months, have become silent because those advocates are no more. Few are trying to come up and are always labeled as confused and misleading. Well, that may be better than the ones that have betrayed history and the country, to do the personal wills.
This government too, is not closer to creating national awareness and public trust. This government lacks trust in anything about Gambia, ranging from technology, innovation, institutions and many more. This government spends Millions of Dalasi on Commissions that are led by either criminals / perpetrators, to investigate into issues pertaining to the former administration. This government lacks trust in our public School and Hospitals. They lack trust in potential Gambians. This government spends millions of Dalasi just on travelling that has yielded us nothing but food insecurity.
Gambia therefore needs the following:
- Awareness on statehood and nationhood.
- Awareness and public trust
- A more revisited and sound education policies.
- A true Gambian citizen not just by actions but my deeds and performance
- A selfless Gambia rule by the people
- A Gambia with literacy level of above 75%.
- A Gambia where the youth is not treated as rebel but as catalyst of change
- A responsive and ever ready Gambia
- A Gambia that would spend taxpayers’ money on public and national development plans
- A Gambia free of ill appointed officials to represent the interest of Many.
- A Gambia where Edward Francis Small, JC Faye, IG Jahumpa, ME Jallow etc are taught throughout in our small systems.
- A Gambia that would recognize the use of it’s own languages in the education system throughout from pre-school to University and government offices.
- A Gambia with political educated population.
- Children growing up to become great revolutionists.
- A Gambia where at the University of The Gambia Plato, Hobbes, Locke, Aristotle are not taught because they began the study of philosophy but Nyeere, Nkrumah, Small, Azikwe, Sankara etc.
- A Gambia where learning at the University is not restricted to Plato, Aristotle, Hobbes and Locke but extended to the writings of Nyerere, Nkrumah, Small, Azikwe, Sankara, etc.
- A Gambia of an independent and impartial commissioners into public commissions.
- A Gambia with a gross happiness index more than the gross domestic product.
The above are some of the ways in which a better and prosperous Gambia may be created from anew. A state that would always protect the rights of others. A state that would not misuse Rights with privileges.
BY: Amadou Ceesay,
Political science Student, UTG