There are two major powers in the country. There is the power of the people and the power of the state.
Political contest is a contest for state power.
There are five types of political contests which could make state power to change hands.
Civilians could take up arms and form a liberation or rebel army to overthrow a government. This would require Millions of dollars to buy arms and ammunition, military attire and food ration to fight a protracted war. A recent experience of an armed intervention to take over by civilians with military training is 30th December 2014.Is this the way forward that is supported by the vast majority of Gambians? If your answer is in the negative then you should consider the next option.
Secondly, mutiny could occur within the ranks of the security forces which could result in a coup d’état. Do the vast majority of people prefer to fold their hands and pray for the day when a coup maker would bring about change for them? If your answer is in the negative then consider the next option?
Thirdly, assassins could utilise means to kill state authorities and thus bring about a change of leadership. Would you be willing to be a suicide bomber or sharp shooter who would strive to bring about change by clandestinely laying in wait to assassinate authorities and leave the subsequent developments to chance? If your answer is in the negative consider the next option?
Fourthly, the people in a country may take over the streets in their hundreds of thousands making it unwise to use force to disperse them as they demand for a change of Government. Security forces often join them and allow governments to fall. Is it evident that the vast majority of Gambians regardless of party affiliation, gender, ethno-linguistic origin or religion are in support of and fully ready to effect such a method of change? If your answer is in the negative then consider the next option.
Finally, a change of state power could take place through electoral contest between political parties. If this is your option one must consider the odds and challenges and how to address them.
The key challenge is that many Gambians admit that the ground is not level for free and fair electoral contest.
How is this to be addressed? Many people in the country are in support of a coalition to increase the strength of the opposition to win elections.
How this coalition is to be formed becomes the next challenge.
Electoral strength is determined by the mass support given to a party or person in elections.
In South Africa, ANC is supported by the largest number of South Africans because of its history as a liberation movement. Hence anybody selected to stand under it as a Presidential Candidate was likely to win. Could the same thing be said for the Gambian opposition? PDOIS’ answer is in the negative. One has no evidence to show that if anyone stands for any given opposition party he or she would win because of the party.
The evidence indicates that the largest opposition party which contested the last Presidential elections in 2011 had 17 percent of the votes while the candidate of the ruling party had 72 percent. This gap needs to be bridged before the 2016 Presidential elections.
PDOIS is of the view that in order for that gap to be filled the country must identify a presidential candidate who would be embraced by people who voted for or against the ruling party in 2011 and those who did not vote at all.
To make that doubly sure PDOIS proposes for each party to select its Presidential Candidate as soon as practicable. The candidates, including independent aspirants should begin their campaign and engage in debates right away so that the voters would begin to make up their minds on the quality of leadership they intend to give.
Each party should then indicate how it wants the flag bearer to be selected. This should also be debated in the public space.
PDOIS’ POSITION ON COALITION BUILDING
PDOIS has already selected its Presidential candidate. If all the other candidates are known by now people would be debating on their merits and shortcomings to shape public opinion.
The PDOIS Presidential candidate has also proposed that since each presidential candidate is to be nominated by 5000 people the nominators should be transformed into an electoral list to enable them to vote at a primary to select one Presidential candidate for the opposition.
No party is yet to indicate how a flag-bearer is to be selected for discussion to commence to reach a consensus. It is urgent for all parties to be urged to do so if they are indeed interested in a coalition. PDOIS has already forwarded its proposal to GOFER, the group established by the opposition, which is also copied to all member parties requesting for the convening of a meeting when all parties send their own proposals. We are yet to receive any other proposal from any other party.
OFFER OF A PRESIDENCY WITH A PDOIS MINORITY IN CABINET AND NATIONAL ASSEMBLY
The PDOIS presidential candidate has offered to be a head of state who would appoint only 7 Ministers in a cabinet of 21 Ministers, that is, one third of the members of cabinet and one quarter plus 1seats in the National Assembly. Hence any partner that considers itself to have more support of voters in past elections could request for more Ministerial posts and more seats in the National Assembly and be in the Majority in both chambers.
Lastly, the PDOIS candidate has offered to serve only one term and not take sides in the subsequent presidential and National Assembly electoral contest.
ALL HANDS ON DECK FOR THE DISCHARGE AND RELEASE OF UP LEADERS AND MEMBERS
The greatest impasse to opposition unity is the arrest, detention and trial of the UDP leadership and members. There could be no credible electoral process unless they are freed. All hands should be on deck to ensure that they are freed.
THE PEOPLE ARE THE DECISION MAKERS.
THEY NEED TO KNOW THE OPTIONS BEFORE THEM IN ORDER TO DECIDE IN 2016. THEY SHOULD KNOW THEIR PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES NOW!!
The only sensible statement which can be seen in this press release is the release of opposition UDP members . The rest of pdois statements regarding coalition is garbage . It is pure distraction . Should be ashamed of themselves when they refused to support peaceful protesters . We not need any lecture .
Max, it is from your comment above that I came to realise that it is a press release (from PDOIS presumably). Notwithstanding, the problem I have is I do not understand the head and tail of the press release. What are they trying to say here? Or is it one of their those ways of perambulating about issues using bombastic languages that is simply not digestible?
As always they have little or no understanding of the issue at hand let alone to come up with a solution. I have stopped commenting about PDOIS as I consider them irrelevant forces but the serious nature of the current situation makes it difficult to ignore them. I think they have to read current situations very well and understand that irresponsible comments/statements can very easily ignite things out of control (and not in their favour). This is about our fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, uncles and livelihoods…
Morro , pdois is simply a party of people dictatorship organization of indoctrinated socialists . They are an agent of dictatorship and their followers are simply confused indoctrinated disciples whose trademark is to turn truth to lies for their selfish political end .
Max, you have said it all. You have hit the nail on the head! I therefore could not add anything. Well done and keep it up.
Please show some humility and respect…”WE don’t need any lecture.!”, did you say..? Who do you speak for.? And who is lecturing you, anyway ?
Isn’t it a sign of inferiority of ideas, and of weakness of thought, that anytime a political view point or position is taken and expressed, folks conclude that it is a “lecture.? If you are in need of a lecture, my advice is to go to a lecture hall. This is a public forum where ideas should be allowed to flourish, whether we agree with them or not, without being seen as “lectures”.
You don’t speak for anybody but your confused and helpless self. PDOIS, by your own admission, speaks for at least, 3% of the electorate and it is that 3% (appro. 15/20, 000 Gambians by last election figures) whose voices have been amplified by PDOIS. Whose voices are you amplifying to be taken as a serious contender to their voices.
And before you start jumping up and down and talking about the biggest opposition party, let me remind you that the UDP has not stated anywhere that they are engaged in demonstrations for regime change, and until they do, your claims attributing such to them should be regarded as MISCHIEVE and FANTASY.
The UDP, at the moment, is engaged in trying to get their leaders released from detention and all peace loving people, opposition or not, should support their calls for their leaders to be released. PDOIS should be counted amongst those peace loving Gambians, as evidenced by their calls for political disagreements to be settled amicably, as well as, for Lawyer Darboe and co. to be released..
What is shameful, dispicable and utterly disgusting is the blatant and careless high-jacking of the genuine struggles of the Gambian opposition for electoral reform and the “helpless” cries of the UDP for the release of both the 14 & 15 detainees, by a cowardly, small but rabidly vociferous segment of the diaspora, to advance their sinister agenda of regime change, through violent confrontations.
Your refusals to fly home and be part of these demonstrations, which has been ongoing for almost a month now, expose you all as cowards and your intolerance to divergence of views and total disregard for the lives of those you push into the streets, show that you are no better than, and different from, Yaya Jammeh.
I am in no doubt, following you lot on various discussion fora and radio shows, that if in the same position as Yaya Jammeh, your behaviour will be no different from his, being intolerant of divergence, condescending and disrespectful towards those you don’t agree with and showing a complete lack of regard for the lives of those you push into the firing line .
Your earlier claims of growing support and admiration from the population for the events unfolding in the Gambia is not supported by facts on the ground and therefore, constitutes nothing but misinformation and wishful thinking.
According to the last Presidential Elections, over 17% of nearly 660, 000 voters voted for the UDP’ candidate. That is well over 100, 000 voters (ONE HUNDRED THOUSAND VOTERS). If they were all in support of these protests and hit the streets, Jammeh would have been history by now. Stop the lies because it will never go unchallenged here .
This statement (from PDOIS) has made the options for change clear. The opposition, as far as we know, has collectively opted for change through the ballot box and all who agree with that option should support them, by first working to secure the release of the detainees,; continuing to push for electoral reforms and then, building a winning alliance or single party formula, where an alliance is not possible.
Let me point out to you lot, that the entirety of The Gambian people are aware of the injustices of the APRC regime towards segments of our society, who completely disagree with their style of governance, but the majority of the PEACE LOVING nation are not prepared to commit an even greater injustice against our people, particularly the young and old, by taking a route for change that could plunge our country into the abyss of chaos and towards possible self destruction..We are a more sensible people than that, I believe.
Unfortunately, even the usually calm, professional and sensible Kaironews has fallen victim to your sinister and evil machinations by allowing voices on its airwaves that continue to incite and call for escalation, rather than call for calm and de-escalation. I guess some might say, in defense of Kaironews, that they are exercising respect for the freedom of expression.
Personally, I will disagree with this view because, for me, “freedom of expression” ends where “incitement to violence” begins, and when you call people into the streets, where they may be confronted by maniacs, sadists and lunatics (with guns) like Sam Sarr, you stand guilty of incitement to violence, in my book. No, “ifs” or “buts”..
Bax , the only person who is inciting violent in The Gambia is Yaya Jammeh and his gang of criminals . Please spare us with your hypocrisy . How can you blame the oppressed people for standing up against the tyrant ?
Kaironews is very professional media which I even get frustrated with sometimes because they like to verify everything before publication . So stop blaming them or everyone . If I had my way with kaironews they would be taken a route that would expose Jammeh further than what they are doing now but I understand they are professional journalists who respect their name and profession . Due to limited access to information in The Gambia , I give them huge credit for their wonderful job . Exposing Jammeh and defending oppressed people is not inciting violent , this is exactly what kaironews and other media outlet are doing . When fighting dictatorship , we should control the narrative but we shouldn’t allowed the dictator to control the information . This is why I totally disagreed with kaironews for their verification of everything information. Any information that has connection to Jammeh himself whether it is his corruption , sexual terrorism or order to kill citizens doesn’t need any verification . It must be exposed . Jammeh is capable of doing anything under the planet . Any bad or evil news in The Gambia must be attributed to him. He killed babes , raped women , watched the video of his victims , raped the wives of his perceived enemies , poison his perceived enemies , He has no mercy for death bodies which is the worst thing . Yaya Jammeh is worst than Idi Amin or any dictator the world has known . We shouldn’t kill him right away when he is captured as he has to answer every question citizens has for him . This is how I feel about him sometimes .
To hell with this endless press releases when you are presented with the opportunity to end the dictatorship by joining prostesters in the street. This man is a liability opposition and a joke. Let him give us a break with this useless press releases. Gambia need leaders who are ready to put their lives on the line in terms of crisis not wannabe so-called opposition leaders like Halifa, Amat and OJ.
What a crazy idea Halifa? Please go on and run for your party. You are the Chief Buthelezi of The Gambia. You have betrayed your country and people for your self end. The reason why you did not support the demonstration because you want it to fail so that the others can be arrested and you can the last man standing. Halifa, Gambian people are not fools and you cannot trick them into submission.
Quote…”. The reason why you did not support the demonstration because you want it to fail….”
Aren’t you forgetting something : That the vast majority of The Gambian People are not demonstrating…?
Why are you deliberately closing your eyes to this fact..? Is it that hard to see or is it something else..?
Even the UDP caretaker executive is not calling its militants into the streets..It just issued an appeal to the international community for help.. Those who are on.the streets (UDP and others) are there by their own volition.
So, rather than have issue with Halifa and his insignificant fringe party, with 3% followers, why don’t you direct your frustration in the right direction…And don’t ask me where that direction is..?
PDOIS militants never seize to amaze. I see you see this as a UDP fight. Instead of seeing this fight as a national fight you have managed to make it a party fight.
Like I have said in many forums this crisis has exposed PPP, PDOIS and the rest of the selfish Gambian politicians.
None of you can ever claim that you are in it for Gambia, never again. All you lies will come to naught.
Gone are the days you mislead Gambians.
This crisis has forever changed Gambia, people are not scared anymore.
The vast majority of Gambians are not demonstrating including Hon. Halifa Sallah…….Isn’t it? What do you really mean by ‘Vast majority’ @Bax? Just a group of two hundred law abiding peaceful demonstrators in the Gambia’s citizen killer state, is a majority in reprsentation you fail to recognise democratically.
You can be hiding in some socialist skin whilst one is a tired old communist in heart flesh and bones. One thing I don’t admire in communists is their phobia towards capitalism and the farce in their ideologies; either dictate or enable dictators.
Your sound like the proverbial blind man, who sees the sun but still insists that it is the moon.
The only people talking about the “UDP revolution” is you guys. Carry on whipping yourselves into frenzied dilutions. And good luck with the “revolution”.
Sober people know that the protests are for the release of detainees and they will continue to seek to achieve this, either by putting pressure on the regime or through diplomatic negotiations.
You carry on with your blame games, if it makes you feel good. The future will tell…
The difference btw PDOIS and sane citizens is that Gambia comes first. PDOIS has been tested and all have seen your score
your ideology matters more to you than the country. I honestly used to entertain you. not anymore
your party has never mattered and with your political philosophy I doubt it will write it self out of usefulness
btw the protest is more than releasing prisoners, you would have seen that if the country mattered to you.
I will let you go back to your games, serious people and politicians have a crisis to attend you
tell your handler to retire, we have had enough of his essays
It is great for you to see for your self that folks are even wiser than you think @Bax………………..Isn’t it?
I too believe now, that you produce the cutting edge art of misrepresentation when it comes to others views and opinions about Gambia’s democracy and civil society restoration process.
Totally misguiding, deceitful and quite contradicting to your cries of a peaceful restoration of democracy in the Gambia, to refer to the recent Udp’s ‘constitutional rights moves’ as; a ‘Udp revolution’. Proverbial blind men do need guidance but not yours I hope.
People moving on are not waiting surely because they don’t have to be blamed for getting late to act.
What a crazy idea Halifa? Please go on and run for your party. You are the Chief Buthelezi of The Gambia. You have betrayed your country and people for your self end. The reason why you did not support the demonstration because you want it to fail so that the others can be arrested and you can be the last man standing. Halifa, Gambian people are not fools and you cannot trick them into submission.
This is a good observation Janjanbureh!
Quite outlandish.’There are two major powers in the country. There is the power of the people and power of the state’. In my opinion, in trying to level a democratic play-field, using the term,’power’ instead of ‘mandate’, endorses and entrenches some kind of a dictactorship.
Do Gambian’s really have the power to say or express their opinions in the Gambia, without fear or favor? I think directly relating state and power is where the masses are denied their basic constitutional rights of freedom of opinion, and even the right to demonstrate for electoral reforms, detention and killing of innocent citizens.
My cultural and traditional mindset is liable to reform when religion itself is; much more the stipulations of the citizenry’s constitutrional rights.
It is clear igonrance and absurd stupidity for a politician to indicate that the state has two major powers . The power simply belong to the people who are represented at the government . Without people there is no government . So any indication that there are two major powers in the country is indeed absurd statement which shouldn’t have come from a party which claimed to be a “party of awareness “, it is gutter igonrance of highest standard .
Bax , if you go back to history , you will see that there were men like you who are cynics or spread cynicism about the efforts of freedom fighters . Dr Martin Luther King had similar problem when he led nonviolent protest in Birmingham where church leaders were not happy with him . His famous letter from Birmingham jail was send to address to those church leadership who you had Similar thinking . I won’t mind you call me names because I know freedom is never given freely by oppressor . You and pdois has the same mentality . Halifa is indeed an hypocrite who never believe in freedom of Gambians in the first place .All his propaganda Is about his selfish political ambition which is now understood by honest Gambians . Recent political tensions has differentiate the political hypocrites from those of real liberators . You can continue on your silly distraction but we will never be deterred in our determination to rescue our country from dictatorship . The worst human beings are the hypocrites who pretend to fight for what is right while they hide behind their hidden selfish agenda to discourage others .
Continue to badmouth the freedom fighters or peaceful protesters . Their sacrifice will be honored in The Gambia in the best fitting ways .
Max please don’t waste your energy arguing with these maniacs who do not put the interest of the country first. Like you said their selfish interest matters more than liberating the country. This crisis has made it categorically clear who the true liberators are.
Please consider applying your undeniable gift and skills toward ideas and strategies to free our country.
Max..I have no nothing but respect and admiration for the courage of those protesting and making demands on the ground. I make a distinction between those lion hearts and loud cyber warriors, like Max.
I will refer you to my views on Dr Martin L.King. Dr King’s struggle had only ONE option open to it and he was on the ground to be part of it.
We have more than one option and there are people on the ground pursuing their preferred options. There is a semblance of your option going on at this very moment, but you have shown no desire to go and be part of it, because (I suspect) you know the ramifications. That’s my problem with you lot. If you want my respect, join the demonstration you have been yearning for years or be forever exposed as a coward.
With regard to the powers in a state, here is a simple question for you.
We know that there was a transfer of power in The Gambia on the 22nd July, 1994. Could you tell your audience which power changed hands on that day..?
“It is clear igonrance and absurd stupidity for a politician to indicate that the state has two major powers . The power simply belong to the people who are represented at the government . Without people there is no government . So any indication that there are two major powers in the country is indeed absurd statement which shouldn’t have come from a party which claimed to be a “party of awareness “, it is gutter igonrance of highest standard”
Max, I think you are missing the whole argument. The state represents the power structure of the country. The government.
And the power of the government emanates from a constitution that gives it the legitimacy to govern.
The constitution is an agreement, a contract between the people, in which they subordinate all their rights, to a governing institution that uses the laws enshrined in the constitution, to govern. To have power over all the people. This is the power of the state.
This power is distinct from the power that still reposes in the people. The power that the people have to change their government. This is the power of the people.
And the people can choose to change their government, either through the established methods as enshrined in a constitution, or through other methods outside the constitution.
It should now be clear why Halifa made reference to the different methods in which a government can be changed.
I give up. How can you associate me with “UDP revolution”..I don’t even think there is a revolution going on at the moment, never mind a UDP one.
“PDOIS militants never seize to amaze. I see you see this as a UDP fight. Instead of seeing this fight as a national fight you have managed to make it a party fight.”
Hammer, you are the ones that never seize to amaze. PDOIS and its militants are looking at this political situation objectively, and our response is dictated by a thorough understanding of the dynamics that revolve around political situations of this nature.
If the political situation rise to the level where it assumes a national character then the response would be different. The people will own the fight.
Those who have the desire to use protest as a mechanism for a change of government are in the minority. The reason why since the start of this street protestation it cannot gain any momentum or direction. You cannot make these protests and demonstrations into what they are not. They cannot bring about a change of government.
The protests cannot bring about a change of government precisely because the majority of the Gambian people are not supporting it. It does not have a national character. It was not meant in the first place to bring about a change of government. Those who initiated the protest did so for electoral reforms.
“Like I have said in many forums this crisis has exposed PPP, PDOIS and the rest of the selfish Gambian politicians.
None of you can ever claim that you are in it for Gambia, never again. All you lies will come to naught.
Gone are the days you mislead Gambians.
This crisis has forever changed Gambia, people are not scared anymore.”
You are reading into this political crises more than what it actually entails. At the end of the day PPP, PDOIS and the rest of the selfish Gambians will be vindicated. Time will tell.
Ok thanks, I am happy now.