THE JULY 22ND ANNIVERSARY HAS PROVEN THAT THE GAMBIA IS A SECULAR STATE

The famous religious scholar indicated to the public during his address that when he first met President Jammeh, he has expressed to him his desire to see Muslims in the country united under the guidance of the Quran and Hadith.

However, the practice at the July 22nd   Celebration confirmed that the Gambia is a secular state which should continue to promote and protect religious belief and practice. In short, immediately after the prayer of the scholar, a female Christian leader delivered her prayer.

Furthermore the ceremony did not break by 2pm when the Muslims in the Gambia perform their Friday prayers. The political dignitaries remained seated and enjoyed the marches and cultural performances up to the evening, thus putting the state outside of the dictates of religious practice.

Needless to say, women wore their jeans and others had their masquerades emerging from traditional religions. Nobody was stopped from leaving for Friday prayers or forced to go for Friday prayers. It was left to the choice of the individual.

There is no doubt that when the Roots Home coming Festival is commemorated again one should not be surprised to see the Malian hunters who were described as infidels by ENSARU DEEN when they took over in Mali. They also destroyed many shrines. However, they took to their heels before superior fire power instead of defending faith to death if they were indeed living for their faith alone. What is clear is that they were using religion to get to power and once power receded from their hands they escaped to save their lives.

The world needs less self-righteous leaders and mote humble servants who work day and night to make people free and prosperous so that poverty and war would disappear and men and women of faith could call people towards virtue by being living examples of the serenity, humility and the highest good that virtue brings. Once human beings are called names, one diminished their humanity and transformed them into objects of spite and hate. Language which promotes dehumanisation of a person, no matter how despicable his or her practice is found to be, is indeed indecent. The harm one does to others must be exposed and condemned. However, human beings should not be described as infidels and rodents. People are capable of the highest evil and the highest good. Their conscience should always be pricked to motivate them into abandoning evil and embracing truth and justice.