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 NADD Holds Press Conference
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Posted - 07 Mar 2006 :  13:14:16  Show Profile Send Momodou a Private Message
NADD Holds Press Conference

Halifa Sallah, the flag bearer of the National Alliance for Democracy and Development (NADD), has described NADD as the pillar of stability in this Country. Mr. Sallah made this statement at a press conference organised by NADD on Thursday at the NADD’s headquarters.
Mr. Sallah told Journalists, that political figures who love this Country must not push for confrontation. He said The Gambia, with a population of 1.3 million has a debt port folio of 22 billion dalasis. Sallah noted that sixty nine percent of Gambians are living in abject poverty.
On the claim that the NADD leadership comprises political lightweights, Mr Sallah pointed out: “I am saying those very people are the corner stone of our stability. Who will call Lamin Waa Juwara a political light weight? He was a member of parliament before 1994. Omar Jallow was a member of parliament before 1994. Landing Jallow Sonko was a member of Parliament before 1994. Kemeseng Jammeh is still a Member of Parliament. You talked about people who have contested elections and won the mandate of the people, you called them political light weights. That is a travesty of truth. It is a conspiracy against good judgment. It is an attempt to sow deception. The reality is that we have a force that is capable of being an alternative and it has been proven in practice. People said NADD will never emerge and it emerged on the 17th of January 2005. It was launched with the support of thousands of people. The Court declared our seats vacant. We decided to proceed with NADD and in the four by elections, we won three. Is that political light weight? Out of six bye-elections, NADD is leading in the popular vote and in the number of seats. You can understand where NADD was heading. The regime after realising the thought of NADD decided to make allegations, remarks, but we have signed a Code of Conduct internally to maintain political decency. When we were wrongly accused, we refuted the allegations. That culminated in arrest and detention. If the aim of NADD is not to build democracy and development, if we were power hungry that was the time to incite the population into violence and confrontation. There would have been massive destruction in this country and others would have come to create ceasefire like you have in Cote d’Ivoire in order to bring about negotiation and a stable government. We engaged in preventive strategy that we will not be dragged into confrontation.”
Omar Jallow, alias OJ, said NADD was formed as a result of the aspirations of the Gambian people who are yearning for change. Jallow said all the opposition parties appended their signature on the Memorandum of Understanding. “The five parties agreed to a code of conduct which we agreed to commit ourselves to. All the five parties drafted a constitution and approved it as the guiding light of NADD as an alliance. We met on the 29th of May at the Buffer Zone in Tallinding Kunjang where each of us reechoed the statements we made on the 17th of January 2005 at the Palm Grove Hotel when we were signing the Memorandum of Understanding that brought us together. We all stated categorically clearly that we will do everything within our powers to make sure that we stick together, work together, struggle together in order to redeem this Country in the plight we have found ourselves. It is on record and it is on tape. We signed that contract with the Gambian people without force or coercion and that is the mission we are following up to this day.”
Jallow said the MOU did outline every stage of NADD’s development including the way the flag bearer will be selected. “We started the process of selecting a flag bearer. There are options; one is by consensus within the executive. If the consensus process failed, we would go into primaries where by in each village or ward, the representative of the women, men and youth will select who will represent them. This process began and a member of the Executive resigned, and delayed the process. But with determination and conviction, continued the struggle because we cannot betray the trust and confidence the Gambian people have in us.” Jallow said Halifa and Juwara were the two nominees for the position of flag bearer. He said Halifa and Juwara have stood against any violation of the constitution and the right of the people.
“We discussed like a family and unanimously agreed at the end of the day to select Halifa Sallah as the flag bearer of the National Alliance for Democracy and Development.
Juwara remarked, “We were operating as equals who have equal stake in the affairs of this country. That is why it was slow. The negotiations went on and on. We agreed and disagreed. This is healthy for our democracy, or else you put up governments and the governments are owned by individuals, and then you have problems.”
Juwara said that there is no mistrust in NADD and therefore there is no justification for the other parties to leave NADD.
“To prove my point, I was a nominee, I contested and agreed to the rules that if they select me or any other person, I will support him and I have proved my point. If I can do it, they should be able to do it. Let us put all personal ambitions aside,” he remarked.
He noted that they trust Halifa and they know that he will respect the Memorandum of Understanding signed by the five political parties, namely NDAM, NRP, PDOIS, PPP and the UDP. He further stated they know that Halifa Sallah will not betray the Gambian people because he is not power hungry.
“These are some of the things we have to accept. The Youngman (Halifa) has put a lot of energy and effort into building NADD, and one has to accept that reality,” he remarked.
Kemeseng Jammeh said, “This is indeed a historic occasion. At the initial stage, we had five parties. It would have been more desirable to still have all of us on board. Perhaps this is the dictation of destiny. This is not what the Gambian people want. The reality of the situation is that people would have appreciated a united front. But that is not the case right now. Now that we are about to go into the field to start effective mobilization and campaign, what I would advise everybody is for us to exercise maturity in the way we go about with our activities. We have other partners in the field who are also engaged in the struggle to bring about change. Let us not antagonize each other. We still have some months ahead of us. It is not impossible for the opposition to have something to do with each other.
Let us conduct our affairs in such a way that it will not be a problem for us to work together. I don’t think the situation is so hopeless that that cannot come about. The doors are open. We have a common enemy and that is the system.”
See next issue of Foroyaa for the contribution of the other speakers.

Source: Foroyaa

A clear concience fears no accusation - proverb from Sierra Leone


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Posted - 07 Mar 2006 :  18:24:43  Show Profile Send kayjatta a Private Message
Great remarks by Halifa , O.J. , Waa Juwara and Kemesseng .
Waa is somewhat a little challenging to the UDP/NRP for their breakaway . Kemesseng is however, more subdued and reconciliatory .
Is the UDP/NRP still open for negotiation with NADD or their doors are completely shut?

Edited by - kayjatta on 08 Mar 2006 22:39:08
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