Now that the APRC under President Jammeh is no more which came through a popular democratic mean, the question that remains now is what next? As you read through this editorial a number of commissions are suggested to be set up.
The regime is defaced with long list of detention without trials, disappearances, arbitrary arrests of citizens, arbitrary closure of newspaper offices and a clamp down on religious and opposition parties.
The new regime will be inheriting a very poor and unqualified civil service as appointments were based on tribe and partisan basis without looking into qualifications for jobs.The civil service is also so seriously politicized that appointees always fail to see the state but rather The APRC party and Jammeh as their employer.
The new regime therefore need to work extra harder to fix the poor civil service set up. The line between partisan politics and nationalism seem to be a thing of a mixed one as far as the APRC regime under Yayha Jammeh is concern.
The above and many more have to be properly looked into by the newly elected government. The new government also needs to revisit the constitution which was never respected by the government of outgoing President and therefore it suffered a lot more mutilation.
There are sections of the constitution which is very clear on certain appointments but no regard is paid to those sections as for as it never serve the interest of Jammeh. One such appointment is deputy ministers.
The Daily New, one of the newspapers that suffered from an arbitrary closure in September 2012 is here-by suggesting the following:
A constitutional review commission be set up, to look at the age limit of aspiring candidates for presidency, the presidential term limit, the deposits for aspiring politicians for various offices, the collaterals for establishment of newspaper, the issue of simple majority when comes to presidential elections, these and many other needs to be looked at.
The Daily News also would like to suggest that a special commission be set up to look into the numerous disappeared persons the likes of journalist Chief Ebrima Manneh, the killing of political youth activist Ebrima Solo Sandeng, journalist Deyda Hydara of the Point Newspaper, and another political activist who died under security custody Solo Krummah.
Another important commission that needed to be set up is the finances of the office of the President of former President Jammeh.
There is a need to set up a commission of enquiry looking into our prisons and prisoners. The Terms of Reference (TOR) should among other things include checking on all the prisoners and their courses of conviction.
This commission should also be tasked to check for all other detention centers/camps and published their locations as most of them are not known publicly. The commission should also be able to verify who are secretly detained and for what reasons. The condition of the prisons should be a concern too.
The Daily News would also suggest that a commission be set to look into the use of our military in the past 22 years. The soldiers are seen as farm managers in many of the former President Jammeh’s farms, in some cases providing security at the expense of the state, we guess. A private farm only needed to fiancé from a private pocket and not state coffers.
And finally the Gambia needs a Truth and Reconciliation Commission; lot water has gone under the bridge in the past 22 years.