IS THE SEPARATION OF POWERS OPERATING FOR OUR COMMON GOOD IN THE GAMBIA?

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The Constitution creates an executive, a legislature and a judiciary and commands them to work in harmony to protect the rights and welfare of the citizenry. Is this mere theory or are we failing to make our institutions work?

The National Assembly has power to invite the president to a session of the National Assembly to discuss any matter of national importance. NPP has 18 seats in the National Assembly and UDP15. These two forces combined have the absolute majority to make decisions to get the executive to discuss any matter that is not in line with the dictates of the Constitution.

Furthermore, all Ministers, all agencies of the state are also answerable to the National Assembly. Hence if the National Assembly functions according to the dictates of the Constitution, it should be able to safeguard the letter and spirit of the Constitution in the running of the affairs of the country.

Hence if the country takes a wrong direction in terms of executive governance, the National Assembly cannot be free from culpability. In the same vein, the judiciary has authority to ensure that there is no injustice in the enforcement of the law and could hold the Inspector General of Police or any law enforcement officer accountable for any disreputable conduct and award damages and remedies to victims.

Hence the formal system has all the authority to ensure good governance if each performs his or her duty as required by the Constitution. Hence if there is any official conduct contrary to the law, it will prove that the operators of the system are either unwilling or unable to make the system work. That will only happen if the people fail to put the right people at the right places to put the nation to work in the right way. They should then blame themselves and nobody else since they are the people who select to put the nation to work. They have elected members of the executive, the National Assembly and the councils. They should all be delivering good governance and welfare to make the people happy. One does not expect them to be pointing accusing fingers against each other instead of making the system work. All the people should speak with one voice to demand that those who are chosen to build a stable, peaceful and prosperous society should now do their best to deliver on promise and reduce the hardship and uncertainty.