MOJA’s Manjang Laments Diplomat, Sarjor Jallow’s Arrest & Disappearance

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Dear Editor,

Please allow me to use some space in your well respected newspaper to express my disquiet over the disappearance and possible abduction and detention of the former Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Momodou Sarjor Jallow. Mr. Jallow is a close friend, a former comrade in the struggle for justice in The Gambia and in countries all over Africa as well as a persistent colleague in the efforts in empowering the poor, disadvantaged and dispossessed and helping them to be self-employed, independent minded and productive citizens of our beloved Gambia. Knowing who he is, I know there is a possible misunderstanding within circles of the APRC government

Though Mr. Jallow has from 1994 been a supporter of the AFPRC and APRC governments, I have never been a supporter of the AFPRC or APRC governments. I take it as a principle never to support a government coming into power through military coups, or through the hatching of plots by isolated groups of conspirators or ad vanguard revolutionaries because of my belief that the masses are their own liberators, not isolated groups of individuals claiming to be liberating on behalf of the masses. So while Mr. Jallow was a supporter of the AFPRC` and APRC governments, I never have been. But this did not stop the comradely brotherhood between Mr. Sarjor Jallow and myself because we were both part of MOJA-Gambia where political pluralism was the ideological norm. Comrade Sarjor and I could continue sharing general ideological convictions while still deferring in our political appraisal and understanding of situations. We could agree on the belief on the need for a non-capitalist path to development while not agreeing on whether the current APRC regime is the way forward to ultimate solution of the problems of the nation.

But despite this dissonance in views Mr. Jallow and myself have respected each other’s views  and continued to respectfully agree to disagree.  Based on this, I have known Mr. Jallow to be a patriotic official of the APRC government and an extremely loyal supporter of the current government. Mr. Jallow and I have long stopped trying to convince each other over to our respective political persuasions and I have no doubt that he has been  extremely loyal to the APRC and its government.

His current predicament is something he most likely do not even understand. It is, may be, because of his wife’s recent support and membership to the United Democratic Party, UDP, but that has nothing to do with Sarjor’s loyalty. Both wife and husband have long been MOJA members, brought up and trained in MOJA’s tradition of political pluralism. In MOJA we were trained to believe and respect that spouses, friends and relatives can hold different views and yet live and tolerate each other and the differences of views. This is why Sarjor Jallow could not stop his wife from expressing her support for the opposition UDP.

This I understand so much that I must write to call for the immediate release of Sarjor Jallow by the authorities concerned. I am, in fact, ready to hand over myself for arrest by Gambian security forces in exchange for his release as soon as I can make myself available if you find him liable for arrest. Information on my arrival will be made on your convenience.

Ousman Manjang, Bakoteh Layout 6th September 2016

 

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