The reconciliation has begun in earnest. This is the Gambian style of reconciliation. Meet at a five star hotel, drink coffee, speeches delivered, sworn a new Chief Justice, former and present government officials take group pictures and life goes on. Interesting, right? You wonder why the Gambian exiled former strugglers are ranging in anger? Social media has been bombarded with videos censoring Barrow and his government for allowing the likes of Isatou Njie Saidy, Sheriff Bojang, Abdou Jobe, AKA Ndombin, just to name a few to steal the show. They just don’t get it. They are completely disillusioned by the move taken by the new government to hang out with the APRC villains.

Ex-Vice president Isatou Njie Saidy, and her successor Fatoumatta Jallow Tambajang have been spotted in a grand style reconciliatory joint portrait. The new government wants to prove a point that it is not here for retribution. It wants to heal the wounds perpetrated by Jammeh. It also wants to make those complicit to the Jammeh atrocities to feel comfortable. That they should feel at home and help shape the affairs of the state. 

True, if South Africa, can reconcile her people after many years of apartheid misrule, why not poor Gambia?  Wednesday was a historic day in the annals of Gambia’s history. The Barrow government has started reaching out to the former ruling APRC.  It is a commendable move! 

Now let get to the main crux of the story line here. We were told that former VP Isatou Njie Saidy, was supposed to handover to VP Fatoumatta Jallow Tambajang. This is the VP president Barrow hired one month ago. She is yet to be officially sworn in. Illegality continues to dominate this new regime. The constitution is under assault. 

In as much president Barrow wants to win the hearts and minds of the former APRC officials, he should comply with the dictates of the constitution. It is wrong to have a VP running around without been sworn in. It is also wrong to create a wrong impression to the visiting delegates due to arrive in Banjul for the independence. Our nation is far from being united. It is a politically polarized nation. The APRC and its agents should confess for any possible crimes perpetrated during Jammeh’s misrule before any meaningful or genuine reconciliation can be achieved. There shouldn’t be any “shortcut masla” reconciliation. 

In the meantime, cabinet is yet to be fully staffed. We have an illegal VP taking over from an illegitimate former VP.  For this regime to be legitimate, it must act responsibly. The constitution should not be circumvented to suit one’s political or family interest. President Barrow should put his house in order before inviting villains into his backyard. The ongoing assaults on our constitution should cease for heaven sake. 

The constitutionality surrounding Fatoumatta Jallow Tambajang’s legal age to serve as VP is yet to be cleared. This regime wants to lure the unsuspecting underdog former APRC government to partake in legitimizing the appointment of an unsworn VP in the name of handing over. There is noway that we as a nation can correct the wrongs of the past, if the regime which should comply with the law, is openly violating it. The failure to have Madam Tambajang sworn into office is an abdication of duties on the part of the president. The president risked losing his legitimacy if he continues to defy the dictates of the constitution.  

Some Gambians are behaving as if  JK should be squarely blame for the country’s problems. Nope! JK was not alone in the atrocities perpetrated during his rule. The whole purpose of “sending him into exile” is being defeated since there is selective justice being openly extended to some killers masquerading as “innocent VP and Ministers.” These folks have no remorse.  They could be seen openly laughing and mocking at their victims. They are shameless. JK should just come home and join the bandwagon of “masla” reconciliation. This is absurd. 

There is nothing wrong to invite the former government officials at the swearing in of CJ Hassan Jallow. But we expect president Barrow to use the occasion to prevail upon some of the villains in attendance not to mistaken his invitation as an amnesty. Families wronged by the former regime deserve justice. If Wednesday’s convergence should be construed as a reconciliation, then we are far from healing the wounds inflicted on our people by Jammeh Musa and his enablers. 

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