Contrary to Hon. Halifa Sallah’s claim, there are losers and winners in any election or competition. Halifa Sallah will never accept that simple fact. As a party leader he emerges a loser in yet another election but he remains in denial. What Halifa Sallah should have done is to graciously give away his chair (step down) and give the baton to a vibrant and dynamic PDOIS member. Don’t make me believe that there is a shortage of vibrant and potential leaders in the whole of PDOIS political toolbox hence Halifa is the eternal leader. Halifa should be bold enough to take sole responsibility for the catastrophic result of the recently concluded local government elections. PDOIS’ failure to secure a clear win in Serekunda Central, a constituency Mr. Sallah represents in Parliament, justifies his leadership failure. What does that tell you? Halifa would have lost his parliamentary seat a year ago had UDP fielded in a candidate in the constituency. But stepping aside is the last thing a leader who refuses to acknowledge winners and losers will do. There is no one who dares question Halifa Sallah’s authority. A forty-year-old party and a seasoned politician in Gambian politics plus all the noises PDOIS talibes have been polluting in the air, Halifa could only clinch 7 seats in the 2018 area council elections. Mama Kandeh, the new kid in the block and his GDC that entered the political arena in less than three years were able to do what PDOIS and Halifa tried and failed in forty years. With all his dishonest, hidden raw cash political agenda Mama Kandeh’s party won 23 seats.
Instead of acknowledging his party’s failure, the resorted to crafting a narrative to escape from criticism and responsibility.
Halifa sees himself as the smartest individual in the entire country and that he alone has answers and explanations to everything. He is demonstrating once again to us by refusing to conceding defeat and congratulating the winners. With Halifa on the helm of affairs within PDOIS, I am afraid we are seeing the beginning of the end of the party with complicated political strategied. Be brave enough and put this into Halifa’s brain and the sooner the better.
For Halifa Sallah’s information, with or without this Area Council elections, Gambians already known it would never be business as usual again in their country. The days of unusual business are gone forever. The Gambian people have taken their destiny into their own hands. The evidence of that lies in the results of the elections.
Halifa should put his PDOIS house in order and stop lecturing us.
Alhagie Touray, Halifa lacks basic understanding of politics, Gambian society and culture. He is not a good sociologist by any means. Here is a man who should have been the best politician in the country since he claims to have studied sociology but he is the worse politician who continues to lose every election except when he is helped by udp. Of course, Halifa will claim that there is no winner or loser in this election since he is already a loser but his confused disciples will continue to sing the song of no winner or loser. You might hear the disciples complain that the voters are not educated enough and many other excuses.
Someone published on Facebook the results of a poll they did regarding the real motivations for the way Gambians vote, just before the LG elections. The question about what decides how people vote was followed by four or five options, ranging from perception of biggest party; tribal association; bribes; candidate’s suitability for the job and party’s programmes.
I cannot remember the exact results but what caught my attention was that the most choices were for perception of biggest party and tribal affiliation.
In other words, Gambian voters are swayed by their perception of the biggest party and the ethnicity of party leader. That doesn’t sound like a politically educated and enlightened electorate to me. Does it sound so to you?
Max, you are the one that lacks basic understanding of Gambian politics from the time of our independence to date. Nothing has changed from the time of our independence to date.
The political culture remains the same, and therefore the results of any elections would also remain the same. It is always the executive that wins elections in the Gambia, more so than the political party that is affiliated to it. This is what has been demonstrated in our political history for the last 50 years plus since the Gambia attained its independence.
The climatic evolution of the last presidential elections would have created a break in this political cycle, but the lack of commitment, sincerity and vision that has been a hallmark of our politics since the time of our independence continue to be a shackle on our backs.
Halifa Sallah has a great understanding of the Gambian political situation and predicament and is responding to it accordingly. He understands the dynamics that are at play and the consequent results that would entail. The reason why our messaging is consistent since the formation of the party in the early eighties. And our mission and vision remains the same.
We have said since our party entered into Gambian politics that no single political party can defeat an incumbent executive president and the party that is affiliated to it in an election. And this has been the case for the 30 plus years of the Jawara presidency and the 22 years of the Jammeh dictatorship.
Jawara’s regime was ousted in a coup. And Jammeh was defeated through a coalition of almost all the opposition political parties in the country. The biggest opposition party, the UDP, has tried unsuccessfully to defeat the Jammeh hegemony through various forms of a party-led coalition but none has succeeded. The party has virtually formed a party-led coalition with all the opposition political parties in the country except the PDOIS.
It is only through the tenacious efforts of the PDOIS and through an independent led political coalition, that the Gambia has been able for the first time in its political history to change its political leadership through a democratic process and the ballot box. The first time that the country is afforded the opportunity and the good fortune to get a new start. To evolve a new beginning.
But unfortunately this is not to be. The new political class that emerged are not better than the ones that preceded them. The political culture remains the same. The lack of commitment, foresight, sincerity and dedication continue to be an obstacle to any growth potential and change in the trajectory of our political situation.
President Adama Barrow was supposed to be an independent executive President who would without any party affiliation carry out a coalition mandate, program and vision. But this has not been the case. He is steeped into the partisan politics of the past that has produced the Jawara of more than 30 years and the Jammeh of 22 years presidencies. With the UDP acting in cohort just like the PPP and the APRC parties before them. And they expect Gambia to be different. It is no darn different.
But the good thing is that politics is a process. And in this process there are laws that govern its movements and contradictions. We are just into the beginning of an interesting Gambian political reality as it unfolds.
Thank you Maxs. You are right Mr. Sallah’s disciples will never challenge him for his poor performance in the elections. Instead they will blame the voters of not being well-educated. Halifa is always right “a saint declared” by his fanatic disciples.
Mr Sallah’s view that there are no “losers” or “winners” in elections is completely consistent with the political message of PDOIS since the party emerged onto the political scene 4 decades ago.
One has to be stone deaf not to have heard this message, if one is old and mature enough, have lived in The Gambia for any number of years since 1985/86 and have seen PDOIS on their political platforms.
PDOIS has a different understanding of, and/or perspective to politics, and pursues a unique style of politicking from mainstream Gambian politics. So, it is those who refuse to acknowledge this fact that are actually living in denial.
Bax , if there are no losers in any election as indicated by Mr. Sallah then why pdois filled in candidates in elections which are considered to have winners or losers ?
Please stop blaming the electorates because it never work for any politician or analyst . You are implying that udp won majority seats because “Gambian voters are swayed by perception of biggest party and ethnicity of party leader” . This is ignorant and silly comment which doesn’t justify why pdois failed woefully to get more seats or make any progress . When jammeh was in power, why did the people never voted on tribal line as you ignorantly and tribally implied in your comments if at all that was true ? Stop tribalism and put your house in order .