Peace Gambia a non-political and non-governmental umbrella consisting of young people from diverse ethnic groups, regions and religious societies, vehemently calls for the President of the Republic of the Gambia, Mr. Adama Barrow; and executives of the ‘Three Years Jotna Movement’ to engage in peace dialogue with a view to settling their conflicting interest.
“Silence is tantamount to nothingness, not acting now might lead to catastrophic consequences and, we, Peace builders will not wait to see that happen,” Peace Gambia Director said.
Speaking at a press conference, held at the youth monument at West Field on Saturday 16th November 2019, the Executive Director of Peace Gambia Lalo Bajo reminded Mr. Barrow and the ‘Three Years Jotna’ executive of the words embedded in the third paragraph of the national pledge of the Gambia, which he quote: “If we insist on pursuing our personal goals without keeping our collective objectives and responsibilities in mind, then indeed we shall fall”.
He added that Peace Gambia wishes to submit to both sides that the collective objective at this juncture is wholly and solely the ultimate Peace of beloved motherland. “The responsibility is our individual and collective efforts required to ensure the peace and stability of the Gambia.
Therefore, we must work together as one people with one goal to avert the dangers this threat has beclouded us” he said.
“Peace Gambia anticipates that His Excellency Mr. Adama Barrow and the ‘three years Jotna’ movement will put the common objective and interest of the Gambia first over individual interests by engaging into peaceful dialogue. Once again we call for dialogue substituting violence”.
Bajo reiterated that Peace Gambia came into being to use all non-violent means at its disposal to unite the people of the Gambia, promote the culture of peaceful coexistence, and the promotion of sustainable Peace and Justice in the country.
He however said the common objective of the conference is the interest of “our nation”, and to submit to his Excellency Mr. Adama Barrow and the executives of ‘three years Jotna’ movement the cries and demands of innocent citizens of this nation. “We the young people of this nation have come to echo the voice of the innocent men and women of this nation; the voice of the sick and the physically challenged ones; and the voice of the voiceless”.
He added that it also aims to unitedly express their stance on the current situation of the country and also to strongly call on leaders to make gigantic steps in nipping the problem in the bud.
Bajo further spoke on the gist of the problem saying that after the end of the Jammeh regime in 2016, there emerged individuals and groups calling on the current president of the country, his Excellency Mr. Adama Barrow to step-down at the end of his three years in office.
He said these Individuals lean on the claim that the president, Mr. Adama Barrow had made a promise during the 2016 presidential election campaign that he was only going to serve for a period of three years.
“The movement now identifies itself as the “three years Jotna” which unofficially translates into English as: the three years has elapsed. The movement publicly vows to protest come December 2019 with a view to seeing the president honor his campaign promise,” he said.
Bajo alluded that Peace Gambia understands that the president, Mr. Adama Barrow, publicly stated in one of his meetings held in Brikama and he Quote: ‘Mbeh Jangfo 2021’, meaning I will be here until 2021.
He noted that the message clearly indicates that there is a serious conflict of interest between the President and the ‘three years Jotna movement’. “Peace Gambia believes that this conflict of interest is a serious threat to the Peace and Security of this nation,” he stressed.
He therefore said President Barrow and the ‘three years Jotna movement’ continue to pull the string in opposite directions, appearing on radios, TVs and public gatherings showing unwillingness to accept the demands of the other side. “This has caused serious concerns since the inception. To our knowledge, the president Mr. Adama Barrow and the ‘three years Jotna’ executives have not met eye-to-eye even for once to nip the problem in the bud”.
Bajo said that the Peace Gambia fraternity has the responsibility to ensure that the Gambia remains a violence-free country as it is always known for around the world –Smiling Coast of Africa.
‘This unprecedented threat to our national security can be resolved by going to the table –Dialogue is the ultimate solution for man. We have learned from history, the tragic destruction of lives and properties as a result of violence in other countries”.
He said it marks exactly fourteen 14-days to December, ordinary Gambians continue to live in fear and in complete darkness over what the December protest will give birth to, adding that a minute does not pass by without people talking about the ‘three Years Jotna’. “We can assert in the strongest possible words that this has started traumatizing ordinary people, and our own mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters continue to cry for peace in December –are we going to be silent until December? Again we call for Dialogue Substituting Violence,” he said.