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With just three active cases and only one related death so far announced in the country, it is about time that the government of The Gambia reopened places of public worship especially the mosques.
The Supreme Islamic Council and Rawdatul Majalis as well as the Ahmadiyya community should come together in a united front and meet the presidential adviser for religious affairs, the minister of health and all relevant government departments to avail on them the importance of opening places of worship as soon as possible.
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Many Muslim countries with greater number of cases and casualties from Covid-19 including neighbouring Senegal and Nigeria have opened mosques. Why can’t we?
In Pakistan for example, the president met with prominent religious leaders to formulate a plan for congregational prayers during the month of Ramadan. The Pakistani state agreed to a 20-point action plan after consultation with religious scholars of all sects. The crux of the plan is that the government in Pakistan had decided to keep all mosques open, a key recommendation made by clerics of all major seminaries. The government didn’t put up a fight to enforce its decision on the clergy. Rather, the meeting with the clergy was called by the government to agree to what the former had demanded more formally.
While arguments about radicalisation and the influence of right-wing forces in Pakistan carry weight, what is unknown is the true power of the clergy if they were to unite against an elected government or the state’s priorities. In such a case, the state would either be sitting with the clergy or negotiating its way out, as we have seen with this decision and countless others before that.
The fact remains that the Pakistani government was never going to impose a lockdown on the mosques or congregational prayers. Any such decision was not going to hold in any form or shape.
For weeks, clerics defied the government’s lockdown orders and with the month of Ramadan a week away, it only made sense that the government would formally agree to their demands.
This shows what our religious leaders can achieve for the faith if they put aside their differences and stand as a bulwark against the creeping tide of atheism and secularism in the country.
Cape Point, Bakau
Parallels between the Trump and the Barrow presidencies
When a president speaks like he descended from the sky, what is happening in America will be the only outcome. When the country is in crisis, there will be no leader to provide leadership. All that the country will be faced with will be the possible use of brute force against the people the dumb president is supposed to lead.
US president Donald Trump left to his own devices would ask the police to shoot the protesters. That’s the horrible situation that the USA has found itself in- Trump was never a leader! Trump is the same like President Barrow of The Gambia- no education, no leadership qualities and no understanding of anything.
How such a buffoon ended up being the president of USA would beguile anyone. And the Democrats who are supposed to be the alternative and address the obvious political and economic reasons that led to Trump the cow becoming president don’t seem to careless about the grinding economic and social degradation that made the “deplorables” voted for Trump.
The people are fed upwhen a democracy is reduced to the people having to vote for the lesser of the two evils! Democracy is supposed to provide the people with political choices and alternatives.
CNN and the FakeNews Syndicate don’t want to talk about the causes of the looting- they just want to talk about the looting and continue attacking Trump for political reasons. They don’t want to talk about the reasons why the looting and the election of Trump. It’s not the electoral college system and the Russians why Trump got elected. The left is just obsessed with stupid politics and has ceased standing up for the working man.
You can’t tell the difference between the Republican and the Democratic Party establishments – the anti-democratic forces I secretly called them.
They hate elections and election results. Reasons why people voted in a certain way for a certain moron- they just want to carry on with the stupid wars and bailing out the banks. The people are fed up with that type of politics and idiocy.
The Democratic party has become the party of the oligarchs – the anti-democratic forces working hard to main the status quo. Elections should not change anything, the people do not know what they wanted and we’ll misuse the laws and the courts to impose our will on the people.
Just like the so-called Democrats, in The Gambia who destroyed the coalition agreement- one can easily contrast the politics happenings in The Gambia and the living hell in the USA.
Trump is evil and unfit to rule but the Democrats simply must embrace democracy and stand up for the causes that the Democratic party once used to champion.
Yes, Barrow is a basket case of a president and unsuitable to rule but when some of us started misrepresenting the laws and discounting democracy in determining how The Gambia should be governed, voila Monsieur Le President Barrow- the never ending nightmare!
More democracy is the solution to addressing issues in a democracy- not misrepresenting the laws and discounting the democratic political process.
You end up getting more than you bargained for.
The Dems cannot control Trump giving us Joe Biden and we cannot control Barrow in The Gambia misrepresenting the laws and discounting the democratic political processes.
Yusupha ‘Major’ Bojang
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