by Alagi Yorro Jallow.
Fatoumatta: A child in an adult body. Gambian politics is a rotten salad. Moreover, it is awful because many of our politicians are rancid condiments, players with shallow consciences in crucial roles. The central issue is the absence of accountability. Evil actions and vile words can be thrown. The politician is free to push the country to ruin. No criminal sanctions. No social sanctions. Gifted with such impunity, the politician sees the public as a toy—broken pieces of dolls.
Moreover, politics is reduced to an exercise in reckless self-indulgence, an enterprise governed by shallowness and opportunism. With that state of affairs, the average politician regresses in thought and becomes a babbling child in an adult body. When the child steps out in the adult body, navel-gazing becomes his preoccupation and vainglory an ideal.
Lawyer Lamin Babadinding Jorbateh, a former director of the notorious National Intelligence Agency (NIA), a High court Justice and Attorney General and Justice Minister, struggled to shred the Gambia. Everywhere he thought inflammable, he lit and threw a match. However, unfortunately, the child’s party was lost when Yahya Jammeh sent him to Mile Prisons with a lengthy sentence until pardoned, so he began stomping around. He was a torturer and a mercenary judge. He punctuated his fables with legal technicalities and double-tongued deceptiveness, and many believed him.
Today, beloved Lamin Babadinding Jobarteh’s oracle of the living God dreams of backsliding into the bosom of the United Democratic Party (UDP). He has flirted with former Yahya Jammeh’s dictatorship to the extent of becoming the Chief legal adviser of the government who justified the extra-judicial killings of the Nine Mile II inmates and did many horrible things as an NIA operative.
Fatoumatta: I like Lamin Babadinding Jobarteh. I once contracted him to represent two of my reporters held incommunicado to apply habeas corpus at the Gambia High court. He showed up in court and never refunded my money. He is an example of a typical Gambian lawyer and a ‘Tangal Cheeb politician.’ They read the law to manipulate the law for injustices. Lawyer Lamin Babadinding Jobarteh received a good education in Malaysia but lacking in basic civility. He is gifted with an intelligent tongue but a deficit in sobriety. Loud and emotional, he knows where the fault lines are. He is the sort of fellow you will want in your camp when everything has come down to gutter sniping. He has an infinite capacity to brainwash the gullible but has little interest in articulating developmental ideas. Perfect.
Politicians like Ousainou Darboe love bullies, jesters, and sophisticated morons. Because they believe people have to be bullied. Sophisticated morons may not have the capacity for physical violence, but they can do incitement, generate alternative reality. Nuisance value is value. Nuisance is particularly of great importance in Gambian politics, where politicians lack self-belief and live make-believe. Lawyer Babadinding Jobarteh is a consummate rabble-rouser. The Gambia is filled with the excitable rabble. So do not be surprised that Lamin Babadinding Jobarteh, despite his glaring and crippling moral handicaps, joined the UDP at will and marched straight to the pulpits. After setting fires on all the structures that hold the country together for 22 years is now masquerading as a bridge-builder.
Lamin Babadinding Jobarteh is one of the folks who think the public is perpetually asleep, perpetually under the spell of his clever tongues, or amnesic.
Lawyer Babadinding Jobarteh indeed must come to any repentance, and he must come before the public with remorse. He must recount his sins and forsake them. He must admit his trespasses, diabolically defamatory statements, and demonic speeches. He must confess his bigotry and denounce it. He must disown megalomania.
Many say every reprobate can join and support political parties because no one can stop anybody from joining any party. Yes, I agree. They also say that politicians say many ugly things, which is held against them; there would be no politics. I agree too. However, allowing ” Tangal Cheeb politicians” to get comfortable inciting division and violence when throwing tantrums, angling for chunks or crumbs will ruin the country. We will destroy society by encouraging politicians to forgo moderation in speech and action by rewarding political arsonists with recognition and prominence.
Fatoumatta: Today, former Justice Minister and former NIA operative Lawyer Lamin Babadinding Jobarteh is a distinguished and celebrated member of the United Democratic Party ( UDP), a political party he once persecuted and tried to kill in the interest of national unity. He wants to taste the rectum of Ousainou Darboe. He wants to help Field Marshall Yadicone wash toilets in the UDP Manjai Political Bureau. Some say the shameless live better lives. They have no scruples. In that sense, Lamin Babadinding Jobarteh is living the life. My uncle once told me that if you want to eat a toad, eat the juicy ones.Lamin Babadingding is smart. He is swallowing giant toads. Well done, my brother. You are the best player. Have fun. My hope is, the public sees and learns.