The head of the political party with the largest stake in the country’s unity government has warned surrogates and senior officials to abstain from making utterances that make the coalition and President Adama Barrow “look bad.”
Ousainou Darboe, the leader of the UDP party implored on ministers and political supporters to protect the image of President Barrow and the government, and stir away from behaviors that, if associated with the Barrow administration, will tarnish its image.
“If we fail to do that, the blame for any bad image will affect all of us,” the Standard Newspaper quoted Mr.Darboe as saying during a rally in the suburban city of Sukuta, in Kombo North.
“All those appointed by President Barrow to the cabinet, other offices and supporters have earned his respect. We should, therefore, be mindful not to do anything in breach of that trust,” Darboe said.
Several government ministers and surrogates, mostly backing the UDP have made comments that recently sparked fury, shining an unfavorable spotlight on the government and igniting concerns of a return to autocratic rule, intolerance, and tribal politics.
“Everyone has equal rights and privileges regardless of tribe or origin,” Darboe said, promising to be part of a government that loathes prejudice and bigotry of any kind.
The police are facing a backlash from opposition activists for denying a major party a permit to hold a rally in Brikama, spurring allegations of unfair treatment and suppression of opposition voices.
Gambia’s democracy has made tremendous successes under Barrow but the recent political flares threaten to cast a shadow over the progress made by his administration.
When he took over the country, Barrow promised greater freedom, an improved economy, and better education as part of his vision for a nation mired in fear and poverty.