By Basiru Sanneh in Bansang

The party leader of the People’s Democratic Organisation for Independence and Socialism (PDOIS) has emphasized the important role of youths in politics. Mr. Halifa Sallah told a news conference on Friday that his party’s leadership is willing to hand over to politically conscious and patriotic youths.
The PDOIS Secretary General said most people, especially the youths, run away from politics mainly because of its challenging and demanding nature. He said politics everywhere needs a lot of sacrifice, the Gambia being no exception.

Sallah dispelled the notion that his more than two decades old party closes its doors to youths. This question was raised at the party’s news conference which came on the heels of the PDOIS’ just concluded congress in Bansang in Central River Region. The adoption of a resolution calling for the establishment of youth wing has prompted some people to point out the party’s willingness to change its business of politics.

The party’s Central Committee Chairman described the congress as “a school for sovereign citizenship.” Mr. Sedia Jatta said the congress availed delegates the opportunity to share and learn from each other. He said the congress enabled delegates to look into the political, civil, economic, social, cultural and ecological systems. Sidia Jatta said this aims to eradicating “all monarchical and patriarchal traditions which impede total ownership of power by the sovereign people and the exercise of that power by chosen representatives who would not carry out any other activity, economic or otherwise which undermines their undivided attention to matters of the state and the duty to ensure the freedom and prosperity of the people.”

Jatta, a former opposition lawmaker, said this new system requires a conscious citizen determined never to put in office leaders bent on usurping their sovereign power.

The congress delved into the Secretary General’s report, debated the Agenda for 2016 and adopted resolutions on the non-viability of President Jammeh’s Vision 2016, aimed at securing food security in The Gambia. The party delegates also adopted a resolution on electoral reform, recommending two four-year term limit for president and voting by paper ballot.



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