Essa Faal Expresses Dismay over Planned Increment of Benefits for Judicial Officers

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Essa Faal, a former presidential candidate for the 2021 presidential elections, has expressed dismay over the planned Increment of benefits for judicial officers by the Government. 

Below is a press release he shared with the public.

“Dear fellow Gambians,

I am deeply dismayed by the recent developments surrounding the proposed bills in the National Assembly aimed at increasing the remuneration for judicial officers and members of the National Assembly. The profound shock and discontentment I feel have led me to stand in solidarity with those angered by it and protest against this concerning decision.

I am a huge proponent and firm believer that ALL public officers should receive fair compensation to lead dignified lives, free from the burdens of poverty, allowing them to focus on their responsibilities without the worry of meeting their families’ basic needs. Furthermore, I advocate for equitable pay for the work done and a transparent system of remuneration, as these principles are vital in combating corruption and motivating public servants.

Unfortunately, the current discussions on salary increments reveal a significant abuse of power and misplaced priorities favoring the privileged few at the expense of those in lower levels of our society. How can we justify a situation where the Speaker of the National Assembly receives D245,000 per month, while a police officer earns only D3000-3500? Such disparities are not only devoid of compassion but are also unjustifiable, underscoring the skewed priorities of the present government.

Amidst the challenges faced by ordinary Gambians due to the high cost of living, it is disheartening to see a focus on benefiting the wealthy minority rather than addressing the pressing needs of the majority. This system of “YEKALANTE” further perpetuates severe inequality, marginalizes the most vulnerable in our society, and erodes confidence. It is therefore imperative for the government to remember that they are servants of the people, not themselves, and to prioritize the welfare of all citizens.

I express my solidarity with the underpaid workers of The Gambia in rejecting the exploitation of the nation’s limited resources. Furthermore, such unjust practices tarnish the government’s reputation and erode public trust. I urge for a return to pragmatism, sound reasoning, empathy, and compassion in governance. Greed, selfishness, and utter lack of compassion for the downtrodden MUST STOP. 

In closing, to those who cannot pay rent- I feel your pain; to those who cannot pay school fees  for your children, I feel your pain; to those who cannot give food/fish money to your families, I feel your pain; to those who cannot buy needed medicine, I feel your pain; and to those experiencing other hardships, I feel your pain. And to all of you, I offer my unwavering support and assurance that real SYSTEM change for a better Gambia is on the horizon.”

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