58TH INDEPENDENCE CELEBRATION WITH UNEASE

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In his address during Independence celebration the President of the Republic focused his attention on the armed forces of the country and called on them not to seek office by overthrowing the government. This is due to the current treason trial of some members of the armed and security forces who are alleged to have plotted to overthrow his government.

The day however has traditionally been designed to prepare the younger generation on their role as the future leaders of this country. The objective is to bring them from all corners of the country to congregate at the stadium to symbolize the unity of country and the need for them to prepare its political independence, territorial integrity and unity.

The occasion is more than a ceremony characterized by school children, which is a manifestation of colonial days when Banjul and Kombo Saint Mary stood mainly as the colony and the other parts of the country as the protectorate. It is in this light that The Gambia, though in 1965 was empowered to take her seat at the United Nations and the Organisation of African Unity was also nonetheless a constitutional monarchy under the executive power of the British Crown with a Governor General representing the Crown. We had a Prime Minister and not an indigenous President. The Children should have been reminded of our history, of how we became a republic in 1970 and did forego our allegiance to the British Crown and in this sovereign republic power belongs to the people and should just be usurped by anyone through the barrel of the gun; a power which should be exercised based on awareness and love of country and people in order to have a government based on the consent of the people. We therefore hope that as we commemorate such event in the future children from all regions will be present to symbolize national