On Sunday, the Secretary General of PDOIS gave PDOIS’ position on the way forward in Gambian politics. He said that the first and second phases of the electoral cycle of The Gambia have revealed two camps in Gambian politics, the camp of formal democracy and the camp of a substantive democracy.
He explained that under formal democracy candidates accept results when each voter casts his or her vote and has those votes counted. He indicated that a PDOIS candidate does accept results when votes are cast and counted without any interference.
On the other hand, substantive democracy is rooted in a contract between citizens and their country and the people. Such citizens will be determined to fulfil such a contract by not subjecting anyone from being subjected to any inducement or intimidation.
The primary objective of elections under substantive democracy is to elect the most competent person to serve the best interest of the people guided by experience, knowledge, conscience and the national interest.
It was emphasized that the formal democracy that exists in The Gambia is not substantive democracy. He pointed out that PDOIS will no longer tolerate a formal democracy that is disregarding all laws and regulations. That is what Foroyaa calls the red line.
The Secretary General added that there are constitutions and laws that prevent illicit funds from being used to lure the voter to vote for a candidate. He said all Gambians are aware of the amount of money that is being accumulated from everywhere and anywhere possible and spent anyhow to attract voters.
This, he said, is considered to be politics and those who engage in it are said to be shrewd politicians. Those who adhere to the laws are seen as dogmatic and unlikely to succeed. He said it would be political naivety for one side to respect the Constitution and the law and for the other side to disregard the Constitution and the law.
He said Gambians must decide whether to put aside the Constitution and election law that restricts acquiring money from foreign sources and corporate bodies and like Le Pen, who went all the way to Russia to borrow 9.4 million euros to finance his party and campaign, or respect all parties and candidates to what the law currently says which prohibits any butut cash or kind being given to any voter to vote for a candidate. He said that PDOIS will no longer allow some to disregard the law and benefit from disrespect of the law while those who respect the law are at a disadvantage. He said the Gambian people must take a stand on this matter for the next election.