Archive for the ‘Editorial’ Category

THOUSANDS OF GAMBIANS CONVERGE AT WESTMINISTER ABBEY TO DENOUNCE DICTATOR JAMMEH

January 27, 2015
Reads :2672
LONDON DEMONSTRATORS

LONDON DEMONSTRATORS

GAMBIAN NONCONFORMIST

GAMBIAN NONCONFORMIST

Gambian nonconformists across Africa, Europe and America have dotted Monday 26 January 2015 as a day of hailing their fallen heroes who met their untimely demise during the Banjul failed coup on 30th December 2014 and most importantly to unequivocally decry Africa’s most heinous dictator-President Jammeh- who continues to unapologetically disregard the due process with impunity. The UK based Gambians protest against Dictator Jammeh’s brutality in front of the Parliament Building, Westminister Abbey; London is a full house success. It locked steps in closed order with a week-long memorial tribute of the fallen heroes whose departed souls received immense prayers from all callers and donors. Funds were also raised in support for their loved ones particularly spouses and siblings. Some of the funds raised will equally be used to subsidise legal fees for Cherno Njie and Papa Faal who are standing trial in America for their alleged involvement in the Banjul failed coup.  

BAMBA SERING MASS-GAMBIA'S EDWARD SNOWDEN

BAMBA SERING MASS-GAMBIA’S EDWARD SNOWDEN

The week-long “Memorial Tribute to the Martyrs” was collectively structured and co-ordinated by Solicitor Yankuba Darboe, Bamba Sering Mass, Demba Baldeh, Momodou Krubally, Lamin Tunkara, Fatou Camara, Banka Manneh, Ndey Jobarteh, Sigga Jagne, Yusupha Cham, Omar Joof, Coach Pa Samba Jaw, Pata PJ, Juka, Omar Bah, Ousainou Mbenga, and Nanama Keita. All programmes were jointly aired by Faturadio, Gainako, Banjul focus, Jollofnews, Kibaaro and Gambia Daily online radios. Its objective was to pay homage to the gallant freedom fighters who forsake all worldly gains, pleasures and their priceless buoyant young lives to liberate the Gambia from the shackles of a vicious tyrant. One of the greatest landmarks of the memorial was knitting together the broken pieces of the struggle. Shortly after it was confirmed that President Jammeh has returned to Banjul and captioned the freedom fighters as terrorists, the struggle suffered a denting blow under its belt. Radio Kankan broke from hell and the devil reign for a while. As usual, voices of reason stepped in and restored normalcy.

The London demonstration was the brainchild of Bamba Sering Mass and Solicitor Yankuba Darboe both siblings of the Kibaaro family. Pa Modou Bojang, Kibaaro Radio manager, who covered the event live for Kibaaro radio described the turnout as the “largest ever held in London”. He went on to reveal that demonstrators want to reclaim the Gambia from its dictator and restore democracy, rule of law and freedom of speech. He cited examples where freedom of assembly is a no go area for any Gambian but supporters of the Dictator. Opposition supporters are persecuted for assembling without police permit.  The highly determined protestors defied the cold English weather and stood their ground a stone throw from 10 Downing Street chanting, “We are human beings too. End dictatorship now. Yahya Jammeh must go. The killing must stop. Yahya Jammeh is the terrorist“. Amidst the defiant demonstrators was Ebrima Ismaila Chongan, a true son of the Gambia to the core. Introducing him to Pa Modou, Bamba described Chongan as a Gambian household name who was the only service chief he stood and resisted the 1994 military junta. Mr Bojang began by asking him why they were demonstrating.

“We are demonstrating for the obvious reasons, that is, the things happening in our country-the Gambia where there is democratic deficit. We want to see democracy and the rule of law restored in the Gambia so that everybody will have an equal say in the affairs of the state. We are also looking for the opposition parties in the Gambia to work together in order to have three conditions: 51% constitution mandate for election victory, equal access to the media by all parties and a vibrant free and fair electoral process. Moreover, to have free and fair elections and anybody who wins is respected. But what is happening now is obvious. No one can say anything. There is no freedom of expression. That is all we are asking for. We are Gambians and we have a right. Furthermore, we in the diaspora should also have a vote”, Chongan accentuated.

“How will this demonstration achieve these lofty ideals?”  Pa Modou tested Chongan.  “This demonstration aims to showcase to our compatriots who are in the Gambia that we have to fight for our freedom of expression. We have seen recently in Sri Lanka which used to have a very strong man as a leader who was defeated through the ballot box. So we can also do it in the Gambia if only the opposition comes together. Right now what  is paramount is not a leadership issue, that is, who will lead the opposition but coming together as a precondition to demand real conditions for free and fair election”, he emphasised.

“Do you hope this can be achieved by this demonstration?” Mr Bojang further challenged the veteran nonconformist and former police chief. “This demonstration raises awareness so that our people become conscious and take control of their own destiny. Before Gambians, even those in the diaspora, were afraid to grace protests against the Banjul tyrant but now a lot of those who were scared are coming out in great numbers. Look at the crowd. It delivers awareness to the doorsteps of Gambians and friends of the Gambia on what is happening in the Gambia”, asserted Chongan.

Other prominent speakers include a female protestor and solicitor Kabirou Darboe. “We want Yahya Jammeh to go. We don’t need him. He does not belong to a peaceful country like the Gambia. Britain must act”, she demanded. Solicitor Darboe was first quizzed to state his reason for demonstrating. “The reasons why we are here is no secret especially when it comes to the Gambia”, he began and continued to add, “We have a terrible situation in the Gambia. The situation is very close to that of Hitler’s Germany. Albeit the Gambian one is yet to cross its breaking point, the conditions are heinous. We are not exaggerating anything here”. “Are you convinced that Banjul is aware of the demonstration in London?” queried Mr Bojang. “Well, it is already there. Honestly, it is there. I was listening to Faturadio this morning and people in the Gambia were sending messages and calling to enquire when is the demonstration starting in London. They are listening and keeping an eye on what is happening. They cannot do it over there. They are depending on us.  This is precisely why I always maintain that when you live in the diaspora and you fail to appear on such protests; you are not only letting down yourself but also your people and country. I hope Britain will use this to show the Gambia government that her people are not happy”, solicitor Darboe stated.

Finally, Pa Modou asked if Solicitor Darboe thinks Britain will emulate America in declaring the Gambia as a friendly nation. “No”, he replied without mincing words. “I don’t think so. Britain will never do that. Britain has always shown many times its disapproval of the dictatorship in Banjul. Removing their embassy in Banjul speaks volume. Our relationship is no longer what it used to be. It is now a mere marriage of convenience. Britain will never call Gambia a friendly nation under a dictator’s captainship. Even though America did, it is but a diplomatic rhetoric.  America is not projecting to the world that it is in love with the Gambia but just to tell the world that they are not at war with the Gambia.  However, America should be mindful of her choice of words when talking about dictators like Jammeh who is constantly craving for America’s recognition and acceptance”.

Gambia Kicks Out German National despite Court Ruling

January 20, 2015
Reads :1614
Bern Georg Diedrich

Bern Georg Diedrich

The Gambia government acted with impunity by expelling Mr. Bern George Diedrich from the country despite winning a court case that established his rightful ownership to a plot of land. The German national bought land in Wullingkama, Kombo North District. After purchasing the land, came an executive order that he should vacate the land. He decided to take the matter to court and eventually ruling was made in his favor. The court ruled that Mr. Bern is the rightful owner of the said land and that no one should interfere with the land. Unfortunately for the German national Gambia has become a lawless country where the rule of might prevails over the rule of law.

The judicial establishment that Mr. Bern looked up to for protection of his property became helpless when officials of physical planning department accompanied by paramilitary personnel evicted him from his land. They didn’t only evict him from his rightful property but on top of that kicked him out of the country. This case  is clear manifestation of lack of independence of the judiciary in the Gambia. The country is ruled with an iron-fist by dictator Jammeh who has arrogantly declared on national television that the Gambia belongs to him. The case also reinforces the narrative that the injustice taking place in the Gambia deserves world attention for it is not only Gambians who are affected but foreign nationals as well.

CORRIGENDUM: FORMER GAMBIAN RADIO PRESENTER NOT SENTENCED TO 22 YEARS

January 20, 2015
Reads :1672
Kibaaro Got It Wrong: Mr Thomas was not sentenced to 22 years

Kibaaro Got It Wrong: Mr Thomas was not convicted or sentenced to 22 years

On 16 December 2014, Kibaaro published an article under the heading: “FORMER GAMBIAN RADIO PRESENTER SENTENCED TO 22 YEARS”; referring to former Radio One FM host Modou Thomas, who Kibaaro reported had been convicted and sentenced to 22 years for extortion of sex from 2 women. It has since been brought to Kibaaro’s attention that it had described and identified the wrong Mr Thomas in the story and picture.

Though, Kibaaro retracted the article on 23 December 2014, after the mistake was brought to Kibaaro’s attention, Kibaaro nevertheless deemed it necessary to set the records straight with this corrigendum for its wider readers to be notified that Mr Thomas has never been convicted and sentenced to 22 years imprisonment for extortion of sex from women, as was reported.

Kibaaro therefore profoundly apologise to Mr Thomas, his family and friends for the embarrassment caused by its story.

It further seize this opportunity to thank them for their understanding of the mistake made.

HONOURING OUR FALLEN HEROES BY RAISING FUNDS FOR THEIR LOVED ONES

January 3, 2015
Reads :3390

Njagga JagneLamin SannehModou NjieThe Gambian community in the Diaspora is weeping in deep sorrow and with a heavy heart at the sad loss in action of comrades in the struggle who went to liberate our motherland from the shackles of one of the worst dictatorships the African continent has known. On the night of Tuesday, 29th December 2014, truly courageous and patriotic sons of The Gambia, sacrificed property, job, welfare, and family, and journeyed across the oceans from the Americas and Europe. All these geared towards rescuing the Gambia from the bondage of a despotic regime whose oppression knows no bounds. We are saddened that this magnanimous mission has met such tragic consequence but no matter what, the dice has been cast and whatever blood that has been spilled shall be revenged on this dying regime. Yahya Jammeh must pay the price!

Today, the entire Diaspora is in sombre mood but remain defiant and indefatigable, our courage ignited by the wisdom and selfless dedication of these fallen freedom fighters whose general wish for a democratic and peaceful Gambia is unabated and shall be upheld .

Death it is said is the end of all mortals but it is for the purpose that which we die that matters after all. For these sons who lost their valuable lives, nothing can be more honourable than dying for the love of your country. We salute them for their gallantry. Their glory and honour shall be with us till eternity and their memory shall be truly documented in the annals of Gambian history for posterity.

Some of the heroes have made the ultimate sacrifice; they gave their lives; some are in the hands of the enemy; and some fortunate few have survived with psychological wounds. These heroes have done their part but they paid a heavy price for it. Those that survive and family members of those we have lost need our support. The GAMBIA DEMOCRACY PROJECT is leading a fund raising drive; proceeds of which will go to the survivors and families of the deceased.

To donate, please use this Gofundme Link http://www.gofundme.com/jkqzs4 or use the dedicated Bank of America account # 237030054103 Routing # 053000196. For International Donors you can use the following Bank SWIFT CODES; BOFAUS3DAU2, BOFAUS3DAUS, BOFAUS3DCCD. Thank you for your generosity.

MAY THEIR HUMBLE SOULS REST IN PERFECT PEACE WITH ETERNAL FORGIVENESS. AMEEN

MILITARY MUTINY ERUPTS IN BANJUL

December 30, 2014
Reads :7281

GAMBIA'S DELUDED MONSTER

GAMBIA’S DELUDED MONSTER

Authoritative information reaching the Kibaaro news desk confirms that a mutiny is currently in progress in Banjul. Its purported leader Lt Lamin Sanneh has been reported shot dead. Gambian state media remains defunct and mute about the whole allege military takeover in Banjul. It is also believed that the mutineers are in control as the dying Jammeh regime is still yet to come up with an official statement. Dictator Jammeh is using his Facebook page to reach out to his loyalists which caste more doubt on its functionality as we go to press.

We will keep you inform as we get more authoritative information regarding the mutiny.

Gambian Refugees in Malta Debunk Freedom Newspaper Claims

December 26, 2014
Reads :1613
Photo sent by a refugee in one of the camps

Photo sent by a refugee in one of the camps

If you are fighting for the welfare of Gambian refugees in Malta whether publicly or behind closed doors you should keep doing so and not be carried away by a recent publication by a Gambian online newspaper that all detained refugees are released and given full protection.

Kibaaro got in touch with the said asylum seekers in Malta to set the record straight. Many of them expressed outrage by the publication that all of them have been released and given full residency status. They claimed that such a narration is false and doesn’t represent the reality on the ground.

Among the 32 Gambians who were detained and were facing possible removal, 25 of them were released and transferred to open asylum camps and 6 are still in detention. Only 2 of them are said to have obtained refugee status and the rest have either got their asylum rejected or under review. Kibaaro earlier on spoke to the refugee commissioner in Malta who re-echoed the above counter claim. It is very important to get the facts before running a story especially when human lives are on the line. We urge all those who are fighting for Gambian asylum seekers to get protection in Malta not to relent or be complacent because of the recent news claims.

We would like to reiterate our stand that the President of the Gambia is very unreliable. No government should strike a deal with a rogue state especially when it has to do with lives of refugees. It is the same Yahya Jammeh who made a proclamation some time ago that Gambian asylum seekers are out to tarnish the image of the country. We would again remind the Maltese government that a law which carries a heavy sentence has been enacted in the Gambia for so-called tarnishing the image of the country. There is a high risk that these Gambian youth in Maltese detention camps or those whose asylum is rejected would be treated as enemies of the state and would therefore face full wrath of dictator Jammeh if forcefully returned home.

Finance Minister Blames Climate Change for Gambia’s Failing Economy

December 24, 2014
Reads :855
Mr.Kebba S. Touray, Minister for Finance

Mr.Kebba S. Touray, Minister for Finance

In a budget speech delivered at the national assembly on Friday 19th December 2014 the Minister for Finance Mr. Kebba S. Touray gave all indications that Gambians should be ready for a rough ride in 2015. It is very evident that the Gambian economy is in shambles and this is mainly because the productive base of the economy; agriculture is crippled as a result of bad government policies and malpractices of a greedy president. For Mr.Touray it is climate change that should be blamed for Gambia’s pathetic agricultural output. Using scapegoats to cover up government inefficiency has always been the modus operandi of the APRC regime and the latest scapegoat is climate change.

The Finance Minister indicated that agriculture would stumble by 15% in the coming year and said this is as a result of delayed and erratic rains. Mr. Touray categorized climate change as an external shock that is affecting the Gambia’s agricultural output. Despite all indications by international bodies that a majority of farmers in sub-Saharan Africa including Gambia are wallowing in poverty, Minister Touray blatantly refused to acknowledge that and instead said only a few farmers would be affected by the decline in agricultural output.

The finance Minister started building castles in the air when he said government policy in agriculture would focus on investment in irrigation infrastructure and mechanization of the whole value chain. He went on to say that government won’t be able to do it alone in its economic development agenda and therefore solicits the support of development partners including the private sector. The truth is Gambia lacks a clear economic development agenda. Economic malpractice is the order of the day. Mr.Touray’s ramblings are a far cry from what the auditor general indicated in his audit report.

Financial discipline is alien to the current regime of Gambia. Audit report indicated that large sums of money are spent without any reason. Large stash of cash was taken from the national coffers and deposited in commercial banks. Which development partner or private sector would like to deal with such a gangster style operating government? Climate change is a global phenomenon and a responsible government should invest in research and training of agricultural personnel so as to give farmers accurate advice on planting season. What is witnessed in Gambia is the clamping down of agricultural personnel and under funding of research in agriculture.  The productive base of the economy is denied resources while the presidential office enjoys lavish spending.  Mr. Finance Minister contradicted himself when he expressed a bleak 2015 in terms of agricultural output yet expressed optimism in an unrealistic vision 2016 of food sufficiency.