By Abdoulie John

The top brass of the Peoples’ Democratic Organisation for Independence and Socialism (PDOIS) reiterated the need for The Gambia to move from regime change to system change, describing it as “the way forward.”

PDOIS Chairperson Sidia Jatta and Secretary General Halifa Sallah successively echoed this concern Sunday during a news conference held at a hall adjacent to Foroya newspaper headquarter in Ebo town.

The move came on the heels of the just concluded Congress of the party held from December 28 to December 30 2019 at Ngayen Sanjal in the North Bank Region (NBR). The theme of the Congress which was “A New Gambian For A New Gambia.”

As The Gambia is emerging from 22 years of the Jammeh dictatorship, Mr. Jatta who is also the National Assembly member for Wuli West, said the task that remains to be achieved is system change. He called on Gambians to rededicate themselves to that fundamental task.

“That is the new dedication,” he emphasized, adding that “the change that we have been calling for is still to come.”

In the run-up to the 2016 Presidential elections, PDOIS was instrumental in mobilising democratic forces in order to put an end to Yahya Jammeh’s two-decade long rule.

Hon. Jatta added that those who are committed to bring about system change in the country should bear in mind that “those that they elect are their servants.”

“They are elected to serve the people, to carry out the fundamental objective of transforming this country,” he said.

Also weighing in on the issue of change was Halifa Sallah who reminded the gathering that he had gone back and forth for weeks with the Presidency when he spoke out about the need for system change. He revealed that the just ended Congress has decided to move PDOIS to the next phase, which is system change.

Sallah said they did not see any trajectory different from the system that has wrecked the country during the previous regimes

“The trajectory of this government is not heading towards changing the system,” he said.

“What We Did Was Strategic”

As a major stakeholder of the Coalition 2016 that unseated former longtime ruler, the party’s leadership raised eyebrows when they declined to take cabinet posts in the government.

“The first phase of national liberation is the sovereignty of the Republic. The second phase is the sovereignty of the people. We cannot bypass that,” PDOIS Secretary General said in an unequivocal way.

In an attempt to shut down critics, PDOIS emblematic figure said the decision they took has been proven to be correct.

He said the PDOIS has always been enlightening the people and its members therefore felt they can contribute to national development in Parliament by promoting sound laws.

“What can we do in a nation without enacting laws, promoting policies,” he quizzed. “We believe that we can more effective in Parliament than being part of Cabinet.”

Ends

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