THE STATE OF THE NATION

91

The political parties have ended their congresses. The role they are to play in nation building and the reason why they are increasing in number are yet to be fully explained.

The 2021 presidential elections was a broad coalition in support of the incumbent. However in the establishment of the cabinet, partisan consideration does not seem to have been taken into account in constituting the members of the cabinet.

It is interesting to monitor how many parties will participate in the forthcoming council and municipal elections. If the national assembly is to go by the rise in the number of parties is not being reflected in their participation in elections. Interestingly enough a registered party has to deposit one million dalasi to be registered as a party.

As we head towards the council elections treason trials are to commence on the 17th of January two days before the Barrow administration clocks one year of existence.

Hence the commitment that Gambians have for a democratic dispensation is still being tested. The trial will reveal whether a coup is still possible in The Gambia or not. The executive has issued a notice of its intention to table a bill on the promulgation of a constitution for the third republic but has not started any visible effort to promote a national conversation on the matter. During the TRRC proceedings many bodies were exhumed. Yesterday the state submitted the remains of Ebrima Solo Sandeng to the family for burial after the end of the first phase of the trial. The appeal phase would not need the actual presentation of the remains for any forensic evidence.

Many people, especially the political parties in the country were invited by the office of the Attorney General and Minister of Justice to witness the official handing over the remains to the family for burial. It is not clear whether the state will take a piece by piece approach to the handing of the bodies to the families or will have one official ceremony for the handing over of the bodies exhumed because of the TRRC proceedings.

The exhuming and handing over of dead bodies should teach the nation to work in unison to build a country whose representatives would seek to protect each person from all forms of injustice and discrimination. The state should be a protector and not an oppressor of the citizens.

On the side of the productive base of the economy, the post-covid development trend of tourism and the groundnut trade would be interesting to watch and evaluate when the season closes.

2023 is already proving to be an eventful year. Foroyaa  will monitor the trend and give guidance where it could. Its primary responsibility is to hold the state accountable to the people.