Bakary Badjie arrived in The Gambia receiving a spirited welcome from his supporters with his campaign team aiming to consolidate his unprecedented approval rating.
Badjie drove through the Kanifing Municipality waving at supporters from his convoy, who were loud with their sloganeering and dancing traditional masquerades.
Badjie is hoping for a big win by establishing a defining partnership with voters, who are looking for a candidate with a plan that will end corruption and revert the Kanifing Municipal Council from a political bureau to service bureau.
“I am grateful for the extraordinary hospitality, it’s a great honor to be back and it is really good to be home, ” said Badjie to supporters, who were brazing the dark at the goo
The mayoral hopeful was greeted by thousands on the streets who waved at his convoy amid dancing and jubilation. Admirers and supporters rushed his vehicle shaking hands with the man, whose campaign says the choice is clear.
Kanfing Municipality is the biggest local government in The Gambia. It has a population of more than 350,000 people and one of the highest unemployment rate.
“Its been more than half a century since we got independence. There is no reason why the Kanifing Municipality, which is the biggest in terms of revenue, is still underdeveloped,” Badjie argued.
“We need to change the status quo from a Council that cannot meet the demands of the people. There are no good roads and refuse is not even collected. The people need to realize and see the impact of what their tax money is being used for.”
Badjie grew up in one of the municipality’s poorest neighborhood – Ebo Town. The neighborhood is often the epicenter of flooding that ravages many parts of the Gambia during the rainy season. He says he experienced the hardship of the people and wants such “suffering to be history.”
He is running on an independent ticket and at a brief rally in a soccer field in Ebo Town, Badjie pledged to weed out corruption and curb leakages that have caused the Council’s revenue to take a nosedive.
As the crowd cheers their potential future mayor, Badjie has vowed to plow taxes back into developing the municipality, bringing about initiatives to create jobs, enter cooperations to address the waste management crisis and provide social and human services.