EYEAFRICA TV: Banjul, The Gambia: Chairman of the pressure group; Operation 3 Years Jotna said their negotiation agreement brokered by the civil society to reschedule their Sunday protest was not a surrender but a calculated measure in the security interest of the country.
Abdou Njie told Eye Africa in a Sunday interview that their demand is clear in the petition they handed to the president during their first protest in December, that if he fails to respond to them, they will take to the streets again and demonstrate. Their planned protest has now been rescheduled to January 26.
The group that has been pressuring Mr Barrow to respect the three years mandate agreement he had with the coalition 2016 political leaders and step down at the end of the three years, was forced to cease a fundraising by the police this month, claiming that they did not obtain a permit.
Mr Njie said leaders have to guarantee their promises and should not allow to be unnecessarily blamed in the exercise of their duties, saying they have had discussion with the Ecowas mission in the country which was based on their demand and what can take the country forward.
“We have heard too many rumours about us that does not conform to the security of the country. We have also been accused of attempting to forcefully dislodge President Adama Barrow and perhaps that was the fear why we were not granted permit to protest,” he said.
He said no one can control another person’s thinking but they are assuring every Gambian that their act is peaceful and will not bring chaos in the country, guaranteeing that Three Years Jotna is not an anti-Barrow group.
The group has vowed not to rest until its demand is met but they now face a new rival countering them with the slogan Barrow for Five Years. They have also conducted a solidarity match in support for President Barrow to remain in power to complete his five years constitutional mandate in office.
Chairman Njie said from the beginning, they have kept their part of the agreement to maintain the peace throughout their activities but said with the advancement of social media in The Gambia, no one has control over what people will write and say about them.
He said it is the people who make the laws, agreeing that Gambia’s current laws are not good that is why the new government is preparing a new construction.
He concluded that what we are asking for is let everything move the right way, saying if President Barrow is sure of himself, let a referendum be organised for people to decide between three years and five years.