Monday, August 31, 2015

If it is good enough for Gambia's Vice President, it should be good enough for the dictator's wife

Mrs. Zainab Suma Jammeh

By presidential decree, the Gambian dictator commanded that all senior civil servants lead their respective ministerial and departmental delegations to the seasonal farm weeding exercise at his village farm in Kanilai, 120 miles away from the capital city of Banjul.

The Executive Order as it is dubbed in The Gambia, effectively shut down the government for three days, in a country that could least afford it because of its current precarious economic condition that requires an emergency bailout from the International Monetary Fund.

Isatou Njie-Saidy, the 62-year old Vice President of the Gambia can be seen her, hoe in hand in the ruling political party's green colors (a mandatory attire), in a back-breaking exercise of weeding her boss's farm while Mrs. Zainab Jammeh, the Moroccan-born wife of the Gambian dictator is in the United States to accompany her daughter to start her second year of High School in Manhattan and some shopping before she returns to The Gambia.   His daughter's last year's annual tuition at the New York school was $ 80,000.  This year, the figure is likely to go up.

The photo at the top is a private jet configuration of one of many options available to her when she travels at tax payers expense while the Vice President of the country, judges, magistrates, ministers and ordinary Gambians toil in her husband's private farm.

Thanks to the weeding exercise, the entire government was shut down for three days in a country that is on a four-day work week and where an average Gambian lives on $ 1.25 per day and where 600,000 or nearly half of the population of one of the most impoverished country on earth is food insecure.  It is not uncommon to find farmers abandoning their own farms for Jammeh's farms for fear of  reprisals.

In the interest of equal treatment of Gambians and Mrs. Jammeh, we'd like to suggest to the Gambian dictator that he requires his wife to join the Gambian Vice President in all future weeding exercises.  If weeding is good enough for the Gambian Vice President it should be good enough for the much younger wife of the Gambian dictator.

It is time for change #JammehMustGo

Thank you Demba N. Njie of Sweden for giving me the idea. :)