The untimely death of Honourable Landing Jallow Sonko came to all who knew him as a shock and tragedy. Finishing his Fajr prayers at the mosque and crossing the street going home he was hit by a speeding vehicle. Landing lived a decent life, never given to fanfare or ostentation, humble and down to earth. We remember him as a young and dynamic Minister in charge of Local Government and Lands in the PPP [People’s Progressive Party] government of Sir Dawda Kairaba Jawara. We remember him continuing to the scheme by the government started in the late sixties to allocate land free to civil servants of all grades and their counterparts in the private sector, and other Gambians.
After the 1994 coup, he took up farming in a big way in his native Nuimi. Nevertheless, when the ban on political activities was lifted he continued to work for his party and tried to revive its. In the elections of 1996, the PPP was allied to the UDP and he was Coordinator in charge of political campaign for the Nuimi and Jokado areas. He continued his work in the PPP up to his death.
Apart from being as astute politician, Landing, or LJ as he was fondly called by colleagues and friends, was also versed in the Quran. At the Pipeline Mosque in, he was not only a senior member of the Committee but he occasionally led prayers particularly Fajr.
Landing’s contribution in the present political dispensation has been substantial particularly in the various efforts, albeit unsuccessful, to bring parties together. He will be sorely missed by all in the political fraternity. May Allah grant him eternal peace.
Issued by Ebraima Manneh, United Democratic Party Administrative Secretary