By Omar Bah
‘Operation Three Years Jotna’, a pressure group calling President Adama Barrow to respect the Coalition three-year mandate, has played down reports that they are planning to storm the State House in January and force President Adama Barrow to relinquish power.
The pressure group threatened to camp thousands of protesters at State House on 19 January to demand for the resignation of President Adama Barrow as indicated in the petition delivered to the government after their peaceful procession.
But the group’s PRO Hagi Suwareh said: “We have no intention to illegally force President Barrow out. Our intention is to frustrate him to step down. We have no plan to storm the State House. That is not in our plans. The message we are sending is very clear; we want Gambians to understand that the time has gone for us to elect our leaders and then sit and watch them do whatever they like”.
He said his group is hopeful that President Barrow will be frustrated and relinquish power at some point.
“Storming the State House to force President Barrow out is treason. We already sensitised our people about the limit to which we can go. We believe anywhere you are as a Gambian you can manifest yourself against anything that you feel is not going right in your country. Anybody going to storm the State House is not doing so in the name of the 3 Years Jotna.
“The way forward is we have given Barrow the petition and we expect him to look at it and give us his response. However, we will continue to do what we did on December 16 but in a civilised manner. We have no intention to go out to create instability; we want to leave a legacy that we will be remembered positively for,” he told The Standard.
He said the group is with the conviction that “without holding our leaders accountable this country will never move forward. We are not encouraging any violence during our protest. We want to hold our political leaders accountable and we are starting with President Barrow.”
Turning to other demands made by the group, Suwareh said: “We are calling for election before September because we don’t have trust in Barrow. We believe the electoral reforms are important but we believe he has no regards for the reforms, we want him to step down. We believe the reforms cannot be realised under him. He has another agenda.”
He commended the security agencies for their professionalism.
The anti-Barrow protest group, earlier this month petitioned President Adama Barrow to step down.
The group held a procession from Sting Corner to Denton Bridge in their thousands calling on President Barrow to honour the coalition agreement three years ago.
However, President Adama Barrow has not made any comment on the group’s demands.