Protest is now being given a new meaning after UTG students expressed their grievances through a restricted protest march from the GRTS Road to their Law Faculty, which could be considered the shortest march for justice in the history of protest in The Gambia.
Despite the short duration of the protest, it has had the impact that it desired. Management has responded with speed by convening a meeting with the students to consider their demands and expressed the measures they intend to take to address the demands. This means that management and the students will be speaking with one voice when they face the government for a solution.
In this regard, if the government is fit for purpose the demands of the students and management will be addressed without hesitation. If the government is not fit for purpose, it’s an election year and there will always be an election year in a democracy, the students will have the right to elect another government that will have the ability to address their demands. Hence protest in a democratic society is not to show anger and contempt that leads to destruction of property and the injury of people but a means of showing realities that are unacceptable to those who express their grievances so that those in authority would not have any excuse to say that they were not aware of the problems. On the other hand, those who protest are not left helpless when complacent authorities ignore their demands. They have the right to replace those authorities who are insensitive to their demands and replace them with authorities who are sensitive and responsive to needs and aspirations. This is what safeguards peace and progress in a democratic society.