By Tabora Bojang
The National Assembly Member for Serekunda has called on the 3 Years Jotna to state clearly if they intend to overthrow the government on 20 January.
Speaking at the assembly on the adjournment debate, Halifa Sallah said the people who combined to bring about the change deserve respect and cannot be insulted because they effected a change that no one could bring in decades.
“In a democracy, the law controls the rights and powers of the people and the power of the people must be recognised based on law. Yes we agreed 3 years, which is only possible under the Gambian constitution under section 65, but the normal mandate is 5 years. If you have a contract with someone and he says he no longer recognises the contract, thus the law comes. What National Assembly Members and leaders of parties should tell the people is that the law states 5 years. So if you betray a confidence of 3 years, when the 5 years comes that is the red line. If you pass that red line, the power of the people and the power of the law will ring on your head. That is why we gave Jammeh the chance to be here until January 18 and that is what the world supported,” Sallah said.
According to the PDOIS leader, the people behind the protest should be honest to disclose to the president if they have plans to overthrow him if he refuses to step down.
“Be honest if you are going to overthrow him but do not fool the young people of this country and give the impression that there is a provision where you can remove him and all other means to overthrow him,” Sallah said.
He said the 2016 change is what makes it possible for people to live in Europe and visit Gambia and go back at their own will.
Mr Sallah then turned to the lawmakers themselves, critising them for ignoring the plights of the citizens by not utilising their constitutional powers to address burning issues facing people.
“You have the power to summon presidents and ministers to appear before you but you are appearing powerless and all you could talk about is the power of protesters. You do not understand your own constitution and you want to call people ignorant,” he chastised.
He further charged: “You don’t have answers to the problems of the country and all you talk about is protests. Who is against the protests? Which is a right no one can deny, but the issue is not about protest, the issue is are we going to overthrow a government?”