Capital FM Radio station last night denied the leader of the main opposition United Democratic Party (UDP) the opportunity to answer questions on his party’s programmes, with the radio management reportedly blaming development on “administrative hiccups.”
Lawyer Ousainou Darboe had earlier accepted invitation to appear on the Kairaba Avenue based radio’s weekly Civil Engagement Hour from 7 to 8 PM (GMT) on Wednesday. The programme anchor Bakary Fatty was expected to engage the lawyer politician on his party’s road to the 2016 presidential election, its programmes and policies. Darboe would have been asked whether there is any legal ”magic” he could use to go around the age limit caveat in the 1997 Constitution.
Listeners would be given the chance to adk questions or comments during the show via facebook or on 4390040 or 3331004.
The radio’s audience was anxiously waiting to hear the voice of a leader on local radio station after a long time. But to their excitement turned into disbelief and anger when Capital FM cancelled the much anticipated programme. It is not clear when Mr. Darboe will appear on the programme.
The programme eralier on featured leaders National Reconciliation Party and People’s Democratic Organisation for Independence and Socialism, Hamat Bah and Halifa Sallah, respectively. The question then becomes: why Ousainou Darboe is not given airtime? Capital FM management provides a scanty answer. It had reportedly informed the UDP leader that the scheduled programme could not procced due to “some last minute administrative hindrances.”
Competent sources told Kairo News that Mr. Darboe “always expects such a development” which has been blamed on “government interference.”
“The government’s goal is dampen the unstoppable UDP’s rising momentum. So we are not surprised about the last minute cancellation because the Jammeh regime wants to do all it can to deny us media platform in the country,” said a UDP official. “Capital FM is trying to avoid a fight with the dictatorial regime. Whatever the case, the station’s management misjudged by failing to uphold the sanctity of freedom of expression, the very cream of any viable democracy.”