Thursday, April 17, 2014

Dialogue With the People Tour - Day One did not go well for Jammeh

Day One of the Meet the Dialogue with People didn't go well for Yaya Jammeh.  First, he took the navy speed boat to cross with his ministers to Barra while the rest of his entourage ventured into those deadly, unseaworthy death traps better known as 'floating coffins.' It took those less unfortunate souls hours to reach the Barra shores.  They should consider themselves lucky they didn't find themselves drifting along the Bakau coast.

At Barra, the crowds were small because Gambians have had enough of Jammeh who has been promising them the moon, only to end up fleecing them instead.  Farmers all over the country are mad and frustrated, all at once.  They are mad because Jammeh has denied them of their right, as members of a supposedly free society in a free market system, to sell their groundnuts to private buyers as they were able to do last year. Chinese buyers participated in the second half of last years groundnut buying season, and were able to offer prices 25% - 30% higher than was previously on offer from the Gambia Groundnut Corporation.  The same opportunity was denied them by none other than Yaya Jammeh

The only visible crowd presence was demonstrated by the so-called Green Boys who were seen in front of the entourage.  However, by the time they reached Farafenni, the Green Boys, the only seemingly enthusiastic group in the entourage had grown tired, unappreciated and unfed.  The Green Boys grew hungry.  When they were shown their living quarters in Farafenni, they grew angry.  Their anger was justified because they were expected to sleep on the concrete floors of Farafenni Secondary School.

Farafenni teachers and school children who came out to greet Yaya dispersed even before the presidential entourage reached the outskirts of town because he was late, as usual.  The small crowd irked him and some unfortunate soul in the local organizing committee will lose his job tonight, and should consider himself lucky if he is not spending the night in a Farafenni jail.    

The way things are going, something tells me by the time Jammeh returns to Banjul, he would have probably lost the support of a few of these Green Boys who are both hungry and angry.  Talk about the misfortune of Yaya Jammeh.  Everybody seems to be giving up on him.  Gambians have finally come to realize that all Yaya Jammeh cares about is Yaya Jammeh, and no one else, and they appear to be in the mood for a new leader and a new type of leadership.

Good luck on Day Two, Yaya.