A senior member of the coalition government has refuted claims by Foreign Minister Ousainou Darboe that the agreement that led to a united front to defeat Jammeh was not signed.
Halifa Sallah, the leader of the PDOIS party and ex-spokesman of the coalition maintains that President Adama Barrow has agreed to serve three years before leading the opposition coalition to victory.
Sallah has dismissed Darboe’s revelation as false as they debate over Barrow’s tenure becomes a center of contention between the opposition and government supporters.
“It is a scientific fact that when falsehood is repeated unremittingly, eventually the false will become the truth and the truth will become the false… and some are utilizing that in order to reinvent history,” he said.
Sallah has challenged Darboe to a public debate over the matter. A parliamentarian in Sallah’s PDOIS party had said the MOU was a gentleman’s agreement.
Darboe, on the other hand, challenged anyone with a copy of the MOU showing that all parties have signed it should make it public.
PPP leader and Minister of Agriculture, Omar Jallow has said that the signing of the MOU does not matter. According to Jallow, the key purpose of the coalition was achieved – to oust autocratic ruler, Yahya Jammeh.
Darboe is the leader of the UDP, the party with the largest paling in the Barrow administration. Barrow had to resign from the UDP after winning the opposition primary to be back by seven parties.
He was in prison when talks were held for the opposition to unite but he was, however, calling shots and remained influential over party members taking part in the Kairaba negotiations.
Gambian opposition parties have always struggled to unite. Previous talks for a united front to defeat Jammeh always stalled due to lack of consensus for a flag bearer.
Mr. Darboe has dismissed that his absence from last year’s talks led to the forming of the coalition and subsequent ouster of Jammeh.