By Saul Saidykhan
Courtesy of http://www.mantankara.com
Early in his term, the French president Emmanuel Macron vowed to make French the dominant culture in Africa. France pledged US $50M to the current Gambia government in its desperation to jump start the economy after hurricane Yahya Jammeh. In the Gambia’s 53 years post-Independence history, many senseless laws have been made. The motion adopted by the current parliament yesterday to turn Gambia over to France is without doubt one of the most asinine EVER! Here is a practical scenario of what this reckless action will do to us:
The Central Bank of the Gambia will become a nominal institution since ALL substantive Monetary and Fiscal policies for the Gambia will be made in France.
The Dalasi will quickly make way for the CFA (PERMANENTLY pegged at 1:100 to the French Franc.)
80 to 85% of our revenues and reserve will have to be lodged with the French Treasury. THEY get to decide what we spend, how we spend, and on what.
We will be required to maintain a minimum of 20% of what we always lodge with them. (In other words, once we lodge our money with them, we cannot access more than 80% of our deposit at any one time!
THEY will decide if we get any interest and how much on our deposits -regardless of global economic realities. We’ll get interest payments based ENTIRELY on the discretion of the French government.
If we need money, the French will ‘lend’ us money at rates they want – even on our own revenue!
French companies will be given A RIGHT OF FIRST REFUSAL on all public works projects, provision of utilities, amenities, and procurement among others. Indigenous Gambian companies and businesses will permanently play second fiddle to French interests.
Soon enough, the French army will establish a base in the Gambia to ‘secure’ our country.
Any leader who tries to upset this lucrative arrangement for the French will be pushed out of office, killed, or overthrown! (Ref: Silvio Olympio – Togo, Modibo Keita – Mali, Ahmed Ben Bella – Algeria, Hubert Maga – Benin, Thomas Sankara -Burkina Faso, David Dacko – C.A.R, Ahmed Ahidjo- Cameroon, Francois Tombalbaye – Chad, Fulbert Youlou – Congo Brazzaville, Leon Mba – Gabon, Laurent Gbagbo – Ivory Coast, Philibert Tsiranana- Madagascar, Mouktar Ould Daddah – Mauretania, Hamani Diori- Niger, Sheikh Mukhtar Mohamed Hussein-Somalia, and Habib Bourguiba- Tunisia.) Doubters can read th e Colonial pact Charles DE ‘Gaulle imposed on dumb African leaders in 1960.
The ONLY African leader who held off the greedy and manipulative French for long was Ahmed Sekou Touray of guinea. But with the help of the CIA, they finally got him on an OPERATION table in Cleveland, OH in early 1984! This was after sponsoring many coup attempts against him – the most blatant being early 1969 when they mischievously announced to the world that Touray was toppled in a coup. This was a ploy to fool forces loyal to Touray around guinea to surrender while their puppets were at the time killing off members of the mostly-compromised Presidential Guard not on their side. Touray escaped that attempt by PERSONALLY over-powering his would-be assassin! Think they gave up? No chance! A year later, in November 1970, the French joined the Portuguese to INVADE Guinea (Operacao Mar Verde) “Operation Green Sea” with over 400 armed men including Guinean dissidents trained in Senegal and Cape Verde. The official ‘reason’ was to rescue Portuguese prisoners of war held at Camp Boiro. Curiously, on landing in Conakry, they divided into 3 groups: one headed to Camp Boiro, one to the presidential retreat outside Conakry which they immediately FIREBOMBED to ashes on arrival (Touray’s Private Secretary who was in on the plot had told them he would be at the retreat that day. Manju cancelled his plans late, thus saving his life), and the third to the official presidential residence and office. Manju personally took command of the presidential palace and for two days, fought off the invaders! (Read the Marist college newspaper article from the time.)
When the dust settled, nearly 500 Guineans – mostly club-goers, were killed by the invaders because they had orders to shoot and kill ANYONE they see who part of their team isn’t! (Read UN Resolution 100 condemning the outrage.)
A few weeks after the invasion, some of the Guineans who helped the colonialists returned to Conakry to confess and show their remorse. 27 Guineans were executed for this crime. To this day, many of Touray’s detractors cite this execution as an example of the man’s cruelty. 500 innocent Guinean lives versus those of 27 colonialist PUPPETS? At the time, Manju was hosting Kwame Nkrumah, Amilcar Cabral, Miriam Makeba, Stokely Carmichael, and other pan-Africanists. This is after the Europeans destroyed two African state unions Touray championed (Ghana, Guinea and Lumumba’s Congo) and (Ghana, Guinea and Mali.) Some still swear loudly that Touray is a tribalist. Yet NONE can example why a tribalist African would try to sign over his country to an African from a different tribe multiple time. Or why his CLOSEST associate for decades is Seyfoulaye Jallow, a man from the very tribe he supposedly hated. And how did the Guinean Telli Jallow, the first OAU Secretary General get that job again?
Anyway, are we so stupid that we cannot learn crystal clear lessons of our peoples’ history with the French? The French continue to rake in close to US $500Billion dollars annually from this unconscionable exploitation of Africans, and a few clueless parliamentarians and a reckless government want to hand us over to France? Teach Gambian kids French if you like, but handing us over to France? That’s like entrusting a pedophile with your child! This is the DUMBEST idea I’ve heard!
Gambians better wake up and resist this. Who gave Parliament and this government the mandate to invite French colonialists to Gambia?