Friday, April 1, 2011

What is the supreme duty of a political party

Halifa Sallah, 
The Secretary General of the People for Democratic Independence and Socialism (PDOIS) Halifa Sallah has stressed that the supreme duty of every political party in a Sovereign Republic is not to seize the power of the people and become a ruler over them.
Instead, he said political parties should empower the people based on their consent.
Mr. Sallah was speaking during a press conference at Churchill’s Town in Serrekunda organized by PDOIS aimed at informing Gambians the party’s efforts to prepare the people for the forthcoming electoral cycle.
According him, this is the most decisive period in the history of The Gambia. “The struggle between divergent views and their amplification in the public domain is the highest expression of democratic system government. This is what PDOIS intends to do and this is why we have been addressing all issues of national importance by issuing statements,” he said.  
He said they have made it clear that no one among the PDOIS is power hungry or has the mentality that it is one’s divine right to rule over Gambians and have realized that each of them has a supreme duty to empower the people and be ready to serve.                      
He said they’ve heard the president’s remarks that opposition is trying to imitate what happens in other countries where the opposition and ruling party confronts each other during election and after election they collaborate to rule and manage the affairs of the state.
However, he said Jammeh gives the impression that every ruling party is concern and committed to the formulation of the policies, priorities, programmes and projects that are required to make the people free and prosperous. He said it also implies that every political party has the same policies, programmes and priorities as the ruling party.
He said: “In our view, coalitions to contest election and form governments could be ideal under certain circumstances, however, this does not negate the fact that every political party have a very clear policy on all aspects of national development. Be it political, civil, social, economic and cultural and should seek to transmit its policies to the people.”
“A genuine political party has a duty to put the policies before the people at all times and to implement them if they are given the mandate to manage the affairs of a state. The same genuine political party should be characterized by the assimilation of the ideas that are necessary to promote the liberty and prosperity of the people and by extension genuine multi party system should be characterized by debates between political parties on fundamental issues where they differ in policies and implementation strategies.”
This, he said is what enable the masses to determine whether a ruling party or an opposition party is fit to govern.  It is therefore reveling that the APRC leadership led by President Jammeh conceives this systematic scrutiny of their mistaken policies and institutional practice as war.
“We in PDOIS would support any chosen person by the opposition voters who will singly stand against the incumbent in the presidential election,” he declared.
He revealed that PDOIS has developed three fundamental strategies in their sensitization campaigns and one strategy is already put into operation recently with rallies held in Kaur, Sami Panchonki, Sutukonding and Sutukoba. These were major rallies to put across their views regarding Gambia and the need for change.
He also argued that they did not hold rallies to promote the candidacy of Sidia Jatta or Halifa Sallah, but to prepare the people to select their next opposition candidate, and to awaken them to be aware of their rights as citizens.
In the last presidential election, over 270, 000 registered voters did not vote, which is more than number of people who voted for President Jammeh. PDOIS is now determined to combat voter apathy through songs and sensitization campaigns.
He said Gambians should realize that the struggle for self determination and independence, territorial integrity, unity and sovereignty is what is called nationalist revolution.
He indicated that they have informed the electorate that apart from this immediate task there is also the second task, which is to make the people sovereign (democratic revolution). Source - The Voice

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