Monday, November 30, 2020

Is Age Being Taken Seriously In USA And African Political Contest?

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QUESTION OF THE DAY

There is a current trend in promoting youthful political leadership in Africa but the trend does not seem to be catching up in the USA. After Obama the USA turned to Trump. Now it is either Trump or the elder Biden. In the USA being in the Senate for a life time career is a virtue of civic responsibility. Apparently, for some public life is a duty to be performed rather than a privilege to be shared. A strong movement for term limit in all institutions of representation is yet to emerge in the USA. Youthfulness is yet to be a primary determinant in vying for the Presidency in the USA.

On the other hand, the slogan we don’t want old pa was the clarion call of Gambian politics since the 29 year old Jammeh took over from Jawara who also  became Prime Minister in 1965 at the age of 41  and served for 30 years before being overthrown. His earlier Cabinet was also a youthful one. Jammeh also took over at the age of 29 and served for 22 years before being removed through the ballot box. His Cabinet comprised youthful ministers.

Currently the President of the Republic is a 1965 born. Analysts should also check the composition of the National Assembly. It appears that most of the members are younger than the President of the Republic.

In the Gambia youthful representation does not appear to be the challenge. The real challenge is the capacity to deliver.

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Ultimately, representation is about service. Power should be entrusted to those who are capable and willing to exercise it to promote individual and general welfare. That is the verdict of truth and common sense and it is incontrovertible.

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