By Pata PJ (Senegal)
I got the chance to listen to #OJ Jallow’s interview on Gainako. Here is my take: GAAARRBBBAAAGGGEEE! GARBAGE. And here is why: Nobody is forcing OJ to take to the streets. HE promised it. OJ was single-handedly the only opposition party leader to have promoted and promised peaceful procession/protest. When Darboe was sternly refusing to ‘lead others’ children in the streets to be massacred’, OJ was trumpeting around making him look like weak, spineless leader. In one interview, he said ‘I think they claim they are the biggest opposition party, let them call and we will answer.’ WELL… after more than two weeks of political crisis with their compatriot and his colleagues in detention, OJ was nowhere to be found and/heard except on some Interparty BS.
I am NOT asking OJ to be reckless and irresponsible, and I will be silly to question his commitment. But like they do to all politicians, they hold your feet to the fire when push comes to shove and your words do not match your actions. OJ was the most accessible to the diaspora and our radios. He was the one person we all celebrate for keeping us in the loop about any developments the opposition parties register or are about to meet, but today He does not want the enemy to know their plans/secrets? He is a politician. That is the fact. We are not asking for details. We want to see, know that something was going on. Is that a tough ask?
About his daughter Neneh? Welp! In a serious and normal political climate, she would have cost her dad a political fortune. Her tone and utterances right after her father hung up the phone was a dead giveaway to OJ’s possible mindset during this period: ‘Dad, this is everybody’s fight. If they all do not, you will not!’ She has a right to her opinion and voice as a Gambian on Gambian matters, but Mr Jallow should and would pay for the damage (if any) she must have caused.
This tribulation is and will be a testament to our political times. Clouts will dwindle and others lit. This is and must not be a UDP fight but from my silly and perhaps inaccurate observation, it is becoming theirs to lose. Politically. Perhaps had any of the other leaders been arrested, Darboe would have been wearing their shoes and not come out in protest. The thing is, we would now never know. Therefore, thus far, HE IS WALKING THE WALK. I still do believe though, that this is the common man’s revolution and will be won by them. The affluent and political leadership may help but may not be necessary.
GAMBIANS, do go out in numbers to support and show solidarity at the courts. These detainees being persecuted for their conscience would need it.