By Nelson Manneh
The advocacy group, PRO Gambia Association announced on 27th September 2017, its intention to commemorate the first year anniversary of the 1st of December 2016 land mark democratic decision, after Gambians ended the 22 year oppressive rule of Yahya Jammeh’s government through peaceful elections. This announcement was made at a press conference convened at the Serekunda West Mini-Stadium on the theme: ‘Making our Democracy Strong and Great Again.’
Momodou Bah, the President of Pro-Gambia Association said December 1st and 2nd are the most important days in the annals of Gambian history. He said on December 1st 2016 Gambians went to the polls to remove the incumbent president and elect a new one; that such an unprecedented decision, led to the end of 22-years of dictatorship and turned a fresh page of true democracy and freedom.
“As the first-year anniversary of this historical milestone approaches, The Pro-Gambia Association is taking a patriotic decision and obligation to convene to the whole world, celebrations to mark this event that happened in our homeland and to patch a way forward,” he said. Mr. Bah said they will utilize the opportunity to inspire and network with other African colleagues in order to find a Pan-African approach towards the democratization of the whole continent.
“When Kwame Nkrumah led Ghana to its independence in 1957, he said Ghana’s independence was meaningless until other African countries have their independence. Similarly, Gambia’s peaceful and democratic transition would be meaningless until all African countries have their peaceful and democratic transitions, “he said. Bah added that despite the dark history of human rights and other forms of violations, The Gambia had a respectable reputation as a democratic, peaceful and stable country. According to him, this led to the 1987 decision by the Organization of African Union (OAU), to locate the African Commission on Human and people’s Rights (ACHPR) in Banjul.
Essa Jesus Jatta, the Secretary of the association said the event will be a one-week celebration starting from December 1st to December 4th and that they have lined up series of activities ranging from symposia to sports.
“We call on all Gambians at home and abroad, to come and grace the event. Issues affecting democracy and other developments will be discussed. We will invite all stakeholders including politicians and other intellectuals, to deliver messages,” he said.,
Jatta calls on all philanthropists for support, in order to make the weeklong event a success.
“We cannot do it alone, so we need support from all angles, to come to our aid, as the event accumulates people from different backgrounds, “he noted.