Please allow me space on your popular paper to comment on an issue of concern to many Gambians. It is quite a well known fact that many people were no doubt quite flabbergasted by the expensive jewelry alleged to have been stolen from the house of the Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly, Fatou Mbye; estimated to be worth about a million Dalasi, according to the revelations in court carried by the 24 February edition of the Daily Observer. According to the story, the fact that the alleged theft was only realized after the Deputy Speaker asked her daughter to take the jewelry to her at the airport while she was about to board a flight to travel abroad, is an apparent indication that it was just a fraction of the jewelry in her possession. She no doubt had some other jewelry on her when she travelled to Dakar. While of course Deputy Speaker Mbye has all rights to seek recovery of her lost property, but the case is certainly an interesting revelation of the extravagance of some of those in positions of responsibility in this country. While the average Gambian goes to bed hungry or gets only one modest meal a day, our own Deputy Speaker is showing everyone that she has in her possession such expensive sets of jewelry like one piece of necklace valued at US$5000 (over D140, 000) and a watch valued at £2,500 (over D100, 000), according to the evidence given in court. It clearly shows how ostentatious some of those entrusted with the responsibility of steering this country to the Promised Land are. Some of those figures mentioned in court are so outrageous that they certainly would not make much sense to most Gambians. This case has once again rekindled the need for those taking up positions of national responsibility to be subjected to thorough scrutiny to ensure that they meet certain basic leadership criteria which of course include being quite sensitive to the plight of ordinary Gambians. It is however quite hard to see how such ostentatiousness can be compatible with sensitivity to the plight of the ordinary people of this country.