Monday 18th February marks the Gambia's 48 Independence anniversary. The celebration was marked by a cross section of the country, including the members of the diplomatic corps, chiefs, civil and public servants, students from various schools, civil society organizations and community based organizations, APRC women and Youth wings, and soldiers in civilian clothes.
The President of Senegal Mr. Macky Sall, President of Equatorial Guinea, Theodor Obiang, the Prime Minister of the Republic of Ivory Coast,Daniel Kablan Duncan, President of the Sanate of Algeria, Mr.Abdel Kader Benasah, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Morroco, Saade-Eddine Al-Othmani and the Minister of Presidential Affairs of Cameroon, Rene Emmanuel Sadi, all graced the occasion.The President of the Republic of the Gambia President Yahya Jammeh, thanked the Presidents of the sister republic of Senegal and Equatorial Guinea for their participation in the Gambia's 48thIndependent anniversary. He said he would make a short speech since he has already made a long speech a day before the event. He thanked the representatives from other countries especially those from United Kingdom.During his speech President Jammeh urged the entire African leadership to unite and work together as one and added that Africa is the richest continent in terms of mineral resources. He however conceded that in economic terms Africa is the poorest of the poor. He however asked the question, why? In his opinion this is true because "instead of working for each other they the leaders would be working against each other because of external interest. "Instead of building peace and economic development, they are re-enforcing military intervention attacking one another instead of sending our children to school, our women to school, gardens and offices, unfortunately the story of the African woman is destitution in a refugee camp", he lamented.
This is very sad he said and expressed that the almighty Allah would not come down to stop it, that they the African leaders should stop this carnage, nobody else he said would stop it for them as they fight outside of the African continent and as they get poorer, forces outside the African continent get richer, he postulated. "As our children spend all their lives in refugee camps, their growth and mental development will be retarded", He opined.
The Gambian President assures all that without education Africa would not be able to stop poverty. He said our biggest problem today is ignorance. He said ignorance cannot be eradicated by any political philosophy except education. He emphasized to all to continue to work together to solve our problems. He enjoined all to stop the wars so that our children can leave in a dignified life.He said he would rather die than to see Gambians in refugee camps, streets, and he would rather die than see students dropout of school.He said education is dear to his heart and that is why for you the Gambian children he said, the sky is very close now, 'the outer space will be the limit'He said as long as they are serious his policy is not who you know but what you know. "My policy is not what tribe you belong to but how well you are ready to perform. My policy is not which village you come from but how dedicated you are towards national development", Said the Gambian president Yahya Jammeh during his speech at the 18th Independence celebrations.
Jammeh also said for him there can be only two tribes in the Gambia, in Africa and the world and that is the good people and bad people, saying for the bad people there would be no compromise.He assured the students of the Gambia that they have heard something they never heard when they are going to school. He said nothing is easy, that even to go to heaven one has to struggle for it and died before you go there. He also warned the students to be focused and respect their teachers. He said they should not be judging how teachers dress but what the teachers are given them. He said if you don't have discipline as a student you will be a failure in life because what goes around comes around. He also calls on men not to leave all the burden of the school children to the wives. He said if you don't take responsibility of your children they would not know you when they grow old. He said you would often have conflict with your wife and say to her you are the one who turned my children against me, he concluded.