|Paramount Chief Alhagie Demba Sanyang|
The Minority Leader and opposition National Assembly Member for Kiang West, Hon. Momodou L.K Sanneh has acknowledged that District Chiefs are very important and influential in our society as the entire people in the district are answerable to them and they are also the Heads of District Tribunals.
However, he asked the Minister for Local Government and Lands, Pierre Tamba to tell the National Assembly what the legitimate role and mandate of district chiefs are, in Gambian party politics.
“The chiefs are Gambians and as Gambians, they have a stake like any other Gambian in the development of the country. Section 137 of the Local Government Act 2002 enumerates some of the functions of the Seyfo and there is no were in the Local Government Act 2002 which says that a Seyfo should not participate in politics,” Pierre Tamba replied.
He was being questioned by the National Assembly Members during a question and answer Session in the first meeting of the 2011 Legislative Year in the Gambian capital,
on Tuesday, April 5. Banjul
The Seyfos (district chiefs) has recently come under stern criticisms for publicly campaigning for President Yahya Jammeh to be made a King. The campaign was led by the Paramount Chief Alhagie Demba Sanyang.
The campaign to change the country from its Republican Status to a Monarchial System of government was quickly rubbished by Gambians abroad, local individuals, including opposition lawmakers and party leaders and the Independent Press.
However, last month, the Governor of Upper River Region Omar Khan said at a meeting with the new United States Ambassador to The Gambia that President Jammeh did not ask anyone to campaign for him to be made a King.