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 Congratulations! HE President Bassirou Diomaye

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Momodou Posted - 02 Apr 2024 : 16:22:52
Congratulations! His Excellency Mr. the president Bassirou Diomaye Diakhar FAYE
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Momodou Posted - 05 Apr 2024 : 15:35:57
President Faye delivers maiden speech on Senegal's Independence Day
The Point: Apr 5, 2024


My dear compatriots,

Tomorrow, April 4, 2024, we celebrate the 64th anniversary of our country's independence. To all of you, I extend my warm congratulations. I pay tribute to each and every one of you for your attachment to the cardinal virtues of peace and democracy that underpin our daily lives. The significant changes we have just experienced peacefully testify, once again, to the maturity of our people, the vitality of our democracy and the strength of our institutions. We must all be proud of this great performance. This year again, by divine grace, our national holiday takes place under the sign of spiritual communion, with the Easter Holy Week that has just concluded Lent and the month of Ramadan coming to an end.

Given the circumstances, instead of the traditional parade, I will preside over a sober and symbolic color lifting ceremony tomorrow at the Palais de la République. Tonight, as we celebrate our regained freedom, my thoughts are with our valiant resistance fighters, famous or unknown heroes, who, giving themselves body and soul, have challenged the odious colonial system and its alleged civilizing mission, to defend the freedom of our people and its values of culture and civilization. I would also like to greet with respect and affection our veterans, who have sacrificed their youth away from their families, at the cost of their lives and freedom.

I pay a vibrant tribute to my predecessors, Presidents Senghor, Diouf, Wade and Sall, who each contributed his contribution to the work of national construction. It is on the basis of this legacy that I want to continue with you our collective quest for the Senegal of our dreams.

My dear compatriots,

The national holiday honors our Defense and Security Forces.

To you, officers, non-commissioned officers and non-commissioned officers, who have chosen the risky profession of weapons, I reaffirm the recognition of the Nation. I express to you my pride, my support and my full confidence in your missions in the service of the homeland, peace in Africa and the world. I salute the memory of our fallen Jambaars on the field of honor and wish the wounded a speedy recovery. The State will always remain in solidarity with their families, with care and compassion. The theme of this edition, The Armed Forces at the heart of national cohesion, challenges us with its topicality and relevance. He reminds us that beyond the ceremonial, the national holiday is above all an opportunity for an individual and collective introspection on our common desire for common life.

Our Defense and Security Forces, under the Army-Nation concept, symbolizing the diversity and cohesion of their socio-cultural components, offer us a good example of what Senegalese living together should be like.

As the Supreme Leader of the Armies, and guarantor of national unity, I am determined to preserve our living together inherited from our ancestors; because we have only one homeland: Senegal, our common shelter, which we all love, which does not begin with us, and does not end with us.

In this spirit, my role, and I intend to fully assume it, is to reach out to everyone, to gather, reassure, appease and reconcile, in order to consolidate the peace, security and stability essential to the economic and social development of our dear country. From east to west, from north to south, I hope that our dear Senegal will remain united and indivisible, in peace and harmony with our national motto: A People-A Goal-A Faith. We owe it to ourselves. We owe it to our children. We owe it to future generations.

This is why our vibrant youth, the beating heart of the nation, will remain at the center of my concerns.

Dear young people of Senegal, I make my own your dreams, your aspirations, and your legitimate ambitions to succeed to be useful to yourself, your families, your communities and your country. Education, vocational training, employment, youth and women's entrepreneurship remain major challenges. I will make it a high priority of public policies, in consultation with the private sector. To this end, we must revisit existing mechanisms, improve and rationalize them so that they better meet employment needs and other income-generating activities for young people.

To encourage job creation, I intend to rely on a strong private sector because it is supported by the STATE. Based on our priority needs, we will work together to endogenize our economy. Of course, the international private sector will have its full role to play. The Senegalese are brave but they are tired and expect solutions from us against expensive living. The issue of the cost of living is of particular concern to me and holds my full attention. In the coming days, strong measures will be taken in this direction, after the consultations I will undertake with the actors concerned.

My dear compatriots, From independence to the present day, our institutional and judicial political system has experienced many adventures, some happier than the other.

Sixty-four years later, the time seems to me to learn from our successes and failures for a more modern, more republican and more respectful of human rights public governance. That is why, after resigning from my position as Secretary General of PASTEF-Les Patriotes, in order to put myself above the fray, I will convene broad consultations with the political class and civil society on: The reform of the electoral system in particular; The replacement of the CENA by an Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI) with a strengthening of its operating means and prerogatives;

The rationalization of the number of political parties, as well as their financing; The registration on the electoral register concomitantly with the issuance of the national identity document

"In addition, to restore the coat of arms of justice, give it back the price it deserves and reconcile it with the people in whose name it is rendered, I intend to organize meetings bringing together the professions of the profession (magistrates, lawyers, bailiffs, clerks and other judicial auxiliaries), university professors and citizens to identify possible solutions to the problems of justice. In the quest for a better Senegal for the benefit of all, I intend to establish virtuous governance, based on the ethics of responsibility and accountability. In addition, I will immediately engage in a bold policy of good economic and financial governance by: The relentless fight against corruption; The criminal repression of tax fraud and illicit financial flows; The protection of whistleblowers; The fight against the embezzlement of public money and money laundering; The amnesty of name-loans and their interest on condition of self-denunciation; The publication of the reports of the IGE, the Court of Auditors and the OFNAC. Similarly, the exploitation of our natural resources, which, according to the constitution, belong to the people, will particularly attract the attention of my government. Thus, in addition to the already effective online posting of mining, oil and gas contracts, on the EITI Senegal website, I will have the disclosure of the effective ownership of extractive companies, in accordance with the ITIE Standard, the audit of the mining, gas and oil sector and a more sustained protection of local content for the benefit of the national private sector. Moreover, I would like to say to all our private partners that they are welcome in Senegal.

In accordance with the laws and regulations in force, the rights of the investor will always be protected, as well as the interests of the State and the population.

To our friendly and partner countries, I would like to ensure that Senegal remains an open and welcoming country for all.

We will constantly ensure that we maintain and strengthen relations of good neighbourliness and active solidarity within our community organizations, including ECOWAS and WAEMU.

Heirs to the pan-Africanist ideal of Sheikh Anta Diop and Léopold Sédar Senghor, one of the founding fathers of the Organization of African Unity, we remain firmly committed to the construction of African integration and the achievement of the objectives of the African Continental Free Trade Area.

Our foreign partners from all walks of life are of equal dignity for us. To all, we owe respect and consideration. And from all we ask for respect and consideration. We will remain committed to fairer and more inclusive global governance, while respecting the equal dignity of the values of cultures and civilizations.

My dear compatriots,

The national holiday, a symbol of our sovereignty, reminds us that we are alone in the face of our destiny, and that no one will do for us what we are not willing to do for ourselves. We have a historical responsibility to strengthen our sovereignty by breaking the chains of economic dependence through the permanent cult of work and result. In this spirit, the Administration must act at all levels in a more welcoming and effective way for public service users. We must ban from our practices undue procedures and formalities that alter the effectiveness of the State.

To this end, we intend to invest heavily in the digitalization of services and administrative procedures. Similarly, there is an urgent need to gain our food sovereignty by investing more and better in agriculture, fishing and livestock, the three feeding udders of our country.

I particularly want the substantial subsidies spent each year in the agricultural season to benefit real producers and not intermediate actors.

Ultimately, my dear compatriots, the independence we are celebrating tomorrow is certainly a festive event, but also and above all a test of resilience and greatness for the nation. Our merit and honor is to pass the test, by displaying a resolute confidence in ourselves, to overcome our fears and doubts, overcome the obstacles ahead of us, and continue together our solidarity walk towards our common destiny, hand in hand, shoulder to shoulder. This is what I invite you to, in the communion of hearts and spirits. Long live Senegal, in peace and security, united, free and prosperous!

Good evening and happy Independence Day.
Momodou Posted - 05 Apr 2024 : 09:22:23
Pres. Bassirou Diomaye Faye and the Future of Africa
By Madi Jobarteh

Any society in a situation of affliction yearns for deliverance. Africa is indeed in dire straits, and it is not an exception. A people in affliction always look out for a leader to lead them out of bondage. The election of Bassirou Diomaye Faye, and the story of PASTEF and its quintessential leader Ousman Sonko have indeed re-ignited hopes in many Africans that maybe this is the beginning of the second liberation for Africa when her people will come to enjoy real political and economic independence and wellbeing.

In his inaugural statement, Pres. Faye remarked thus,
“On the African level, the scale of the security challenges and the many challenges that we face require us to show greater solidarity. I clearly hear the voice of the uninhibited elites who say loud and clear our common aspirations for more sovereignty, development, and well-being. Alongside my African peers, I reaffirm Senegal's commitment to strengthening efforts for peace, security, stability, and African integration.”

Verily I hear echoes of Kwame Nkrumah, Patrice Lumumba, and Julius Nyerere in this statement! Therefore, Africans across the continent and in the diaspora have a reason to be jubilant and hopeful when we hear these kinds of statements from no ordinary politician and political party like Diomaye and PASTEF. Indeed Pres. Faye’s inaugural speech was no ordinary statement especially when he also noted that, “Through my election, the Senegalese people are committed to the path of creating a just Senegal, a prosperous Senegal in a progressing Africa.” Notwithstanding the many times African politicians and leaders came to betray their people, I wish that Faye and Sonko will be the beacon of hope and change that we so much need in Africa.

That politicians and their technocrats in Africa have failed is as glaring as the sun at noon. The current dire social and economic indicators bear testament to this failure. For example, a report by Oxfam in 2021 noted that West Africa alone is the poorest and the most unequal region in Africa where “the wealthiest 1% of West Africans owned more than everyone else in the region combined.” Both UNCTAD and the AU concluded that between 1970 to 2018, the continent lost 2 trillion US dollars through capital flight, “which is almost the annual gross domestic product of all sub-Saharan African countries combined”.

This repulsive inequality, excruciating poverty, stinking corruption, and dreadful deprivation of the masses of Africans are caused by none other than politicians and technocrats in African governments. Aided and abetted by the African Union and its regional blocs such as ECOWAS, as well as the unfair and unhelpful international system, African governments have become the epitome of bad governance and incompetence. These conditions are the basis for the widespread and gross human rights violations, the deadly irregular migration, and unending conflicts on the continent.

Pres. Faye appears to be aware that business cannot continue as usual when he said, “to friendly and partner countries, I reiterate Senegal's commitment and openness to exchanges respectful of our sovereignty in accordance with the aspirations of our people in a mutually winning partnership.” Africa needs courageous, intelligent, and committed leaders like Bassirou Diomaye Faye if it is going to salvage herself. Are Africans ready to protect such leaders or, as Bob Marly observed, are we going to stand aside as they kill our prophets? Remember Thomas Sankara, Patrice Lumumba, and Amilcar Cabral!

The current state of Africa is inexcusable and unacceptable. If Europe or Japan could rebuild themselves into viable nations within 50 years of the end of that devastating Second Imperialist War in 1945; if Singapore can pull itself from a hapless tiny poor country into a first world nation between 1960 and 1990; if China could turn itself into the second largest economy in the world within 70 years, what justification does any African country has to remain wretched as they are?
Pres. Faye must be reminded that he owes no obligation to both internal and external selfish interests. The stranglehold by local elites in Senegal and the exploitative control of Africa exerted by the West must be dismantled. The new scramble for Africa spearheaded by China and Russia must be halted. Africa needs a new voice; its own voice to echo the dreams of Cheikh Anta Diop, Kwame Nkrumah, Amilcar Cabral, and Patrice Lumumba. Senegal must lead the way by detaching from western hegemony and in particular the unconscionable control and manipulation of France! The foreign scramble for Africa from the days of slavery to colonialism to the present must be shattered.

In this regard, it is pertinent that Pres. Faye and Senegal lead a new path for Africa. This would require advocating for the overhaul of the African Union and its regional blocs. These bodies cannot and should not continue to be safe havens for dictators and corrupt presidents who wish to cling onto power at the detriment of their people. The AU and its regional blocs must be seen constructing a democratic and prosperous Africa and not to entertain tyrannical and corrupt leaders only to intervene when conflicts erupt. A case in point is the Senegal scenario itself, which if left to the AU and ECOWAS alone, former president Macky Sall would have been in office until today.

Pres. Faye should vigorously without compromise pursue system change. As he noted, “I am aware that the results coming out of the polls expressed a deep desire for systemic change… “I am committed by promoting the cult of work, the ethics of management, discipline, and love of the homeland to resolutely and sustainably put Senegal on the path to economic and social progress.”

These words must not only be upheld and not betrayed but Mr. Faye must ensure that they are achieved. Since 1960 the masses of Senegal have endured poverty, deprivation, and poor social services. Yet Senegal, like the rest of Africa, is a highly endowed country with huge natural and mineral resources which continue to benefit a tiny bunch of local elites and foreign interests. This despicable trend must be halted and reversed so that the nation’s natural resources and wealth are protected and invested back into the people. Therefore, Pres. Faye must uncompromisingly insist on and pursue transparency, accountability, and performance within the public sector.

In the final analysis the dire social, economic, and political conditions in Africa are unjustified. Africans deserve democracy, protection of human rights, quality social services and opportunities like everyone else around the world. The resources as well as the knowledge and skills necessary to achieve that prosperous Africa do exist within Africa. It is not just happening because the African politicians and their technocrats have failed to put in place unapologetic, pragmatic, and viable policies to uplift their people. Senegal and Pres. Faye offer us that opportunity today.

For a Unified, Democratic and Prosperous Africa.
Momodou Posted - 03 Apr 2024 : 13:15:45
Senegal’s new president promises ‘profound change’
The Point: APRIL 3, 2024

By Ngouda Dione

Bassirou Diomaye Faye was sworn in yesterday as Senegal’s fifth and youngest president ever, promising to restore stability and bring economic progress.

The 44-year-old defeated Amadou Ba, the candidate of outgoing President Macky Sall’s ruling coalition, by a landslide in the first round of voting, reflecting high hopes for change in the country of around 18 million people.

“The results of the election showed a profound desire for change,” Faye said after taking the oath of office at a ceremony he attended with his two wives.

Over a dozen heads of state attended the inauguration, including President Adama Barrow.

The smooth transition was a welcome boost after three years of unprecedented political turmoil in Senegal that had raised concern about democratic backsliding in the coup-prone region of West Africa.

“Senegal will be a country of hope, at peace, with an independent justice system and a stronger democracy,” Faye said, promising to manage affairs ethically and to build the economy.

“I will work towards preserving peace and national cohesion and make sure we preserve our most cherished resource, our national stability,” Faye said.

Expectations are high as Faye, relatively inexperienced in government affairs, becomes president of a young population frustrated with rising living costs and a lack of jobs in a country set to become an oil and gas producer this year.

The new president has vowed to tackle corruption and introduce a series of economic reforms to prioritise national interests, including the re-negotiation of oil, gas and mineral contracts with foreign operators.

He has not yet said what role Ousmane Sonko, who has been at his heels and joined a meeting between Faye and Sall last week, might play in the new government.

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