By Baba Jobe
While individual world leaders are working hard for greater inclusive societies, it’s unfortunate Yahya Jammeh is preoccupied with his ‘divide and rule’ sickness. News emanating from the media has reported that Jammeh has launched an attack on the Mandinka tribe. Like many, the news has left me angered and dismayed, and as a result, I cannot let it go without expressing my repugnance to such an act. It’s totally distasteful and deserve absolute condemnation. To single out and discriminate any tribe cannot be tolerated within the boundaries of the Gambia.
Leaders are expected to lead by example. Working for the unity and a cohesive society are core requirements of a good leader. On the contrary, Jammeh being a selfish dictator, has always tried to incite tribalism and discrimination as a weapon to rule the Gambia. His last attack on the Mandinka tribe is just an illustration of this.
I can recalled the aftermath of the September 2013 United Nation General Assembly in New York, the United States, where he was held like captive by Gambian rights activist, he released a statement on national television, purposely and carefully tailored towards attacking the same ethnic group. The same statement was renewed by him during an address to the public on the eve of Eid.
His actions are unpatriotic and cannot be condoned. No true patriot will trade tribalism for society. His remarks are unproductive and nothing other than to create tribal hatred in the country to suit his personal agenda.
While his recent tribal attack may be shocking to many, it shouldn’t have been unpredicted. Taking into account the recently concluded nationwide tour by the main opposition party, the UDP, it would have been foreseen that Jammeh will create headlines again.
Few weeks ago the UDP, succeeded in challenging the blocking tactics of the Kanilai born dictator, to once again meet and remind the Gambian people about the malpractices, incompetencies and failings of Jammeh’s bloody regime. In his own words, the party leader, Ousainou Darboe described the tour as ‘’successful’’, a message that of course, forced Jammeh to start his own tour.
During his tour it was clear that Jammeh didn’t have anything credible or meaningful to offer, given the state the economy is in, not to mention about the trauma many are suffering from the unending disappearances, unlawful detentions and imprisonments. Jammeh wasn’t left with any option but to resolve to aggression by uttering hate speech in order to distract the masses from the status quo. This is very selfish.
Surely, Gambians are now familiar with Jammeh’s tribalism and ‘divide and rule’ policy. This is why we shouldn’t be carried away by the notion of being not affected because we are all affected by Jammeh’s dictatorial regime in one way or another.
It’s worth to note that Jammeh is not acting in the country’s interest but rather massaging his own personal interest. This evil remarks of his should not be allowed to be a tool to distract and divide us, instead it should serve as a source of strength and bring us together.