The term enabler is as according to the Oxford Dictionary: A noun and it means: A person or thing that makes something possible:
Now how can we as people make things possible? People throughout the ages enable things happening by not necessarily being visibly playing active roles. So in regards to the above topic Jammeh enablers and Struggle enablers who is who. Let’s first aim to give a brief definition of who Jammeh enablers are but in Part one I would rather much center on Struggle enablers:
Jammeh enablers are people who enable President Yahya Jammeh different ways. As Jammeh continue dictating the affairs of state by disregarding the respect for the constitution that constitute the state for equal treatment of people regardless of their colour, creed, religion, political affiliation and sexual orientation. These types of enablers can be further divided into many sub groups as per their direct involvements and indirect involvements So let me try as much as possible to define them just briefly one by one.
First those that works directly with Jammeh in his administration promoting his agenda and upholding his grip on power. They are those we see openly playing direct roles in carrying out his orders and any proposals brought forward by him without regard to their individual oath of office. So we call them open enablers. They include cabinet ministers, some Army Police and NIA officers, Parliamentarians, certain members within the Judiciary and Local government officials ect. Second are his agents either in the electoral commission or other supporters who promote his agenda to the electorate vote for him be it party officials, Chairmen and Women, Yai Compins, party stalwarts, the green boys and girls, ordinary town and village supporters who have benefitted one way or the other by their support of the regime and even secret enablers within the opposition and diaspora group that pretend they are opposing the regime.
I shall come in detail about the above subheadings later in this article but please allow me to define the struggle enablers also and give detail analyses to roles they play either enabling the struggle or enabling Yahya Jammeh.
First the Opposition with their open and secret supporters both on the ground and in the diaspora, certain government staff that are unhappy with the status co and wanted change but yet can’t do it openly as a result they work underground with either the oppositions or various diaspora groups furnishing them with vital information to bring the defaults of the regime in the open, some of them too work with the media groups both at home and abroad to help reveal the dirty dealings of the regime and to help expose it to the outside world. There are also the diaspora struggle enablers and their collaborators. In this group being very crucial under the present circumstances, there are the open advocates of regime change while there are some who only want the regime to do some sanitation work within its system in terms of promoting human rights and respect for the rule of law and as long as they do this it is ok they can remain in power as long as it is possible. There is also another group of vocal struggle enablers within the struggle that are basically interested in promoting their own individual interests or agendas like become potential leaders in a post Jammeh era or use the struggle to gain monetary benefits. As far as the first that I called position seekers are concerned, post Jammeh, all those oppositions on the ground should be seen as useless and therefore they should be out of the equation so that new faces can step in and take over. As for monetary benefit seekers, they are the worst for they don’t care if the struggle succeeds or fails but all they care is how much can they gain while promoting the struggle? But their dark secret they hate to be exposed in the open as that would be too bad for their business. So any move that is geared towards achieving the end of tyranny and as a result end to their business, they would do everything to fight against it by banging heads against each other closing their eyes hitting left, right, center causing mistrust to take root within people in the struggle. There is also another set within the struggle enablers that interested in dipping their hands in their purse to put money together in an effort to gather enough capital that would help the struggle financially but they would not want to play any active role rather they would prefer to remain in the background. They help different Struggle enablers so that they can challenge Jammeh and his enablers pound for pound.
Having tried to define the two now the anus of reality lies with a sound thinking mind to analyse and pin point who is who in both camps as the race over wining the hearts and minds of Gambians intensify.
There is no doubt that the Gambia is hard and things are not the ways they should be and despite the present situation which should have been a gaining ground for the opposing group instead it is the Jammeh and his enablers winning why? If the government does things democratically this whole thing would have ended long time ago but alas there is no democracy in the Gambia. Now the only thing we can do as Gambians is by weighing the scale and see where the heavy weight balances the lighter weight and who gains out of it all.
In my opinion it is only on technical grounds the regime wins the whole opposition group both on the ground and in the diaspora in terms of strategies of operation. I shall explain how and why the regime sustains itself so well in that field. Despite President Jammeh and his camp are known worldwide and even inside the Gambia to be repressive, brutal and vicious, they are good at mending fences with their foes by ways of amnesties, reconciliations and reappointments. Whereas within the opposition, either they are always suspicious of each other or rumour mongering to destroy one another for their individual benefits. This is true both on the ground and in the diaspora. People are suspicious of each other while the mongers continue their rumour of division. It is quite becoming a cancer within the Gambian opposition that old strugglers are kind of not comfortable with new comers fearing either the influence new comers may bring or the likability of such new comers within society.
But first let me hasten to say that because of such suspicions and mistrust of each other many of strugglers within the opposition have made themselves enablers of the Jammeh regime indirectly without some even knowing it. We all know division within various opposition groups on the ground and in the diaspora only enables the regime in power to sustain the status co. So instead of realising the shortcomings, the reason struggler enablers always remained stagnant when it comes to uniting to achieve their collective goal lies in collective failure. While Jammeh and his enablers work day and night to mend fences with their enemies in other to bring them onboard into their camp, Struggle enablers constantly tear each other apart causing open confrontation and breeding hatred amongst their midst. Now who dare accuse the other of being Jammeh enablers leaving himself or herself behind? The truth is only those without shame can contemplate trying.
On the ground front in the Gambia, when discussing Jammeh enablers on this essay, we tend to put aside our focus away from Yai Compins, party stalwarts, the green boys and girls, even ordinary town and village supporters who have benefitted one way or the other by their support of the regime just to give a classical example where we in the struggle fail to achieve our collective aims of restoring democracy back to our motherland Gambia. Just a question to those in the opposition and in the diaspora would do the math. Why have we failed to convince our members of families to stop voting for Yahya Jammeh for them to gain their respect and dignity as people and also enable us breath relief always worrying who is kidnapped, imprisoned tortured or killed amongst them. Why can’t we openly expose these diversionists amongst us whose families enable Jammeh day and night? The answer is simple because they are our own families, parents, uncle, aunts, cousins nieces friends ect. I challenge anyone within the opposition and Diaspora to deny having a family member within the Jammeh enablers and we will have no one. So when some of us very vocal against the system cannot even convince our own family members, parents or even close friends to vote against the system, where do we have the moral right to challenge any other person who has been within the system but now joins the struggle to help uproot tyranny?. While some have relatives that still vote for the regime and campaign to convince others to vote to sustenance the dictatorship, they go about run their dirty mouths like tap or stream of river Gambia flowing from Futa Jallon meandering toward the Atlantic.
Let us ask ourselves, which one amongst us that gives information vocally on radios or write on news papers to people, do not have informers within the Jammeh regime? Now let’s be honest to the struggle how do we call our informants? Are they Jammeh enablers or struggle enablers? If they are the former why don’t we scold them for being part of the evil system? No we secretly protect them while they run the machine of tyranny and dictatorship but yet we all openly attack their colleagues who are not in their brackets and some of dare go even further by vilify their former colleagues who broke ranks with them to join our struggler calling them ex Jammeh enablers and destroyers of the struggle. Is it fair? But let us not forget we have in our midst various group of struggle enablers and Jammeh enablers. So who is who?
Let us be wise for once because only fools buy into cheap propaganda tools that directly or indirectly help maintain the Jammeh tyranny. We are all with eyes and ears seeing and hearing that Jammeh and his enablers welcoming some of our own with the struggle enablers that jumped ships in to the Jammeh enabler folks. With some hoping to get positions, while others aim to grab the presidential pardon in other to visit their motherland to help cure their nostalgic sicknesses. Another group jump ship into the Jammeh enablers because of their frustrations over disunity and infighting within the struggler enablers. So as a result, Jammeh enablers increase their number each day while we decrease in number each day. What is wrong with us welcoming former Jammeh enablers? Is it because of few sick minded people amongst us whose problems I shall explain later in the essay feel uncomfortable about their presence or what? Are those people amongst us feeling uneasy because they have something to hide from us? We have all for now failed collectively and that includes you and me though That is why some of us only concentrate on Yahya Jammeh because of our failures to convince every member of our extended families not to support dictatorship. Some have failed in that field despite it is impossible to have everyone on board when advocating against a sitting regime. What we can do now is to occasionally attack the top enablers of tyranny to slow them down so that we can gain the winning ground which is acceptable in politics. But what about our immediate family members? Why must we fail there too? Then who can we convince to belief in us?
Now that brings me to why the division within diaspora? One must be very careful when reading this part of the essay as may leave no stone unturned. It is down to only three problems Tribalism, Jealousy and envy.
The most sensitive issue which is tribalism that a lot of us try as much as possible not to discuss it is what I will try to touch first.
Now let me try defining tribalism to be able to analyse it appropriately:
Definition of tribalism in Oxford English Dictionary: A mass noun which is a state or fact of being organized in a tribe or tribes. Example in sentences could mean chiefly in derogatory terms as the behaviour and attitudes that stem from strong loyalty to one’s own tribe or social group: which in essence is a society motivated by cultural tribalism.
Now if by going within the context of the Oxford Dictionary meaning of tribalism, then most Gambians are tribalists. By general and most acceptable societal derogatory definition, tribalists are people who tend to promote their tribe above other tribes. But even within that context, most Gambian are again still tribalists because everybody loves his or her tribe more than another tribe like everybody loves himself/herself more than you would love another. The last which is a more general acceptable term of definition of tribalism, can only exists from the fear of the minds especially when from a smaller tribe. But it does exist in every tribe and they are group of people who have the minds of either their way or the high within society. In that and in most cases it’s mostly the larger tribe that receives the punches while the fan of character assignation and the venom of mistrust and hate roles.
Readers must not forget the fact that the Author is aware of today’s dominant view of African politics which is without any doubt that most voters ballot strategically to ensure that “their man within their tribe” winning the top office, so that the benefits of patronage could trickle down to them and that reality is often felt in our Gambia as evident within political parties set up along tribal lines. But the truth in a broad view is promoter of tribalism are the greedy few in any given society that fans division because seeking to lead and nation or section of the state should be based on one’s ability serves that nation and section of the state better than their opponents in the race and rather not based on tribal lines. Having acknowledged that fact, it is also discovered that much of such nations that vote on tribal lines have only thrived in corruption more than nations that vote better candidates into office. Maybe because of the above, some potential aspirants of high office cry behind tribalism accusing their opponents of using or benefitting when they use it more or benefit from it better. The truth could be that some candidates vie for high office because they belief their tribal affiliation would play favourably for them while others are simply vie for office because they are rather a winnable candidate and their agendas would sell better in the electoral market than their opponents. So it depends on who one listen to attentively in a debate as in Africa especially the Gambia, voters are often the weakest link in the chain of democracy, as their ignorance and poverty is easily exploited.
A researchers Raphael Frank and Ilia Rainer, which examined voting patterns in 18 African countries which may include the Gambia, throws this into a tailspin, and pokes holes in the conventional wisdom that ordinary African voters are just poor, helpless creatures tragically exploited by politicians into selling away their vote for a half-kilo of sugar or a bag of rice. In our view, advocators and promoters who accuses others of tribalism are always the insecure members of society that intends to become recognised within that society but are fearful their agendas would not be acceptable by the people including members of their own tribe due to their behaviour or mindset and thus their chances of leading or succeeding being minimal though not because they come from that smaller ethnicity but because they do not have a better agenda for the betterment of the nation. With such fear in their mindset, they can only resort to creating mistrust for the opposing camp by fanning the flames of tribalism especially when they belief such might play a part in their success to become what they seek. That is why the Oxford Dictionary gave the definition as the sentences could mean chiefly in derogatory terms because it’s only in derogatorily term such advocators that succeed. Otherwise tribalism can never gain grounds when the nation’s people are of a listening ear looking for candidate with solutions to their problems regardless they are from smaller tribes or the larger tribes. Inferiority complex can be dangerous in human beings. Likewise we must know the notion of tribalism and its advocators are dangerous to national development. Fear mongering within the smaller ethnic groups about domination of the larger ethnic groups or candidate from a smaller ethnic group being labelled as only interested in promoting the agenda of his/her tribe is a derogatory tool used by those few to cause division in a nation and derail unity of people as one nation. In a nutshell advocators fanning the flames of tribalism are always within the inferiority complexity brackets of any society.
History has shown us that people, who would be bold enough to go out there approaching the society regardless of their tribe to sell their good ideas to them, are most times lucky to become great leaders of that society. Examples in Africa are: Leopard Sedat Senghore who comes from the Serer tribe and the larger Wollof Fula Mandingo and Jola tribes of Senegal with his agendas of a united and better Senegal, succeeded after selling such ideas to his people in becoming first President of his country. Nelson Madiba Mandela, who comes from the Thembu tribe, managed to penetrate the larger tribes like the mighty Zulu tribe and other tribes in uniting all South Africans under the ANC to challenge Apartheid and succeeded in becoming first democratically elected President of his country. Zambia’s President Edgar Lungu who hails from the minority Nsenga ethnic group was able to thrive beyond tribal lines to become leader of his nation and so many African leaders. So it is after all true also that in some African countries, that ethnic favouritism i e the tendency by a leader to favour his own ethnic group (or clan) with jobs, schools, hospitals and other “fruits of development” can be canned and sealed in today’s Africa much to talk of the Gambia? If the above is so, then why fanning the flames of tribalism? Why can’t people follow the examples of such leaders that managed to thrive above the venoms of tribalism to make their nations the envy of their neighbours thus becoming great icons of their people and beyond? Advocators of tribalism do cause frustrations and weaker minded people always fall for their cheap traps and sometimes such kind of people out of their frustrations do respond to their noise of hate and division thus plunging the who nation into mistrusting one another along tribal lines.
The author must hasten to acknowledge that he has himself in the past nearly fell for those same air of mistrust due to advocators of tribalism and as a result he was not proud of himself even though then he did what he did not because he was a tribalist but to simply hurt back those promoters and advocators of tribalism whose only aim was to divide people that are one regardless of which tribe they may come from. Those who accuse others of being tribalist or simply saying there is tribalism there is tribalism here but would dare not be brave to name who they think are those tribalists. Due to statements they made or wrote the Author once or twice responded in kind to attack them but realised he may have hurt other innocent and genuine uncles, aunts’ brothers and sisters from another tribe different from his. But now he is happy because he had proudly apologised to those genuine people either publicly or privately that is why he can today openly discuss this topic with fellow citizens. There is no doubt in the Author’s belief in the broader mindset of our nation’s people for unity as one family regardless of tribe or religion because we collective belief the better united we can become as proud people of one nation, the more develop our dear motherland can become. So the smaller group that is in the minority who are Promoters of tribalism though we are aware of their determination to have it their which is to divide us along tribal lines, the fact still remain that more sober Gambians from all works of life are begening to identify themselves one by one so as not to fall for their hate campaign. It is beautiful we are crying together “not in our name”.
The other is Jealousy and envy which I intend to deal with together due to their similarities. These areas are other sensitive areas that we as Gambian need to discuss if we aspire a new better and solidly united Gambia post Jammeh era.
Envy and Jealousy, according to Oxford Dictionary means:
ii. Definition of envy in English: is a mass noun which is a feeling of discontented or resentful longing aroused by someone else’s possessions, qualities, or luck:
iii. whereas Jealousy means: The state or feeling of being resentful
Most people use the words “jealousy” and “envy” interchangeably, but they’re actually two distinct emotions. Jealousy is solicited anytime there is a threat to something that is of value to an individual in other words, it’s that icky feeling you get when you are afraid something will be taken away from you or you might lose something to someone. Envy, on the other hand, is the emotion solicited when somebody has something no matter whether you have more than that parson or less but all the same regardless that you want for yourself.
One reason why people often mistake the two for each other is because jealous reactions and envious reactions often look similar, as according to Professor Yochi Cohen-Charash, Ph.D., an associate professor in the Department of Psychology at Baruch College and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. Who said that: with envy, “the gap is between what you have and what the other person has the other has something you want to have by all means necessary,” So the goal to reduce this gap becomes simply by bringing the other down either through harming them or using slander and lies to bring them down and bringing yourself up. But with jealousy, the idea is to protect yourself from having something taken away from you. These two are strongly built both within the Jammeh enablers’ camp and the Struggle enables’ camp.
These are all feelings people get within this struggle as a result they feel insecure and in their insecurity they would go against anything they are not involved or part being of. They would disapprove any move that would yield the end result to ending tyranny and dictatorship in the Gambia and in essence they become the unidentified enablers of Jammeh even when openly they are seen as enablers of the struggle. This is a fact affecting weaker minds within the struggle.
The truth is we don’t usually consider what it is like for those who are envied, but people who are the recipients of envy can feel very uncomfortable and hurt besides their families love ones do not sometimes help matters as they mostly encourage them to leave the struggle and relax thus also a hindrance to the struggle and strength to the Jammeh enablers. The truth is all Gambians are envied by one individual who is no other than our President Yahya Jammeh despite he has his enablers but the truth is he only let them be as long as they remain slavish to his commands. That is why we are so very hurt by this many actions. Imagine having someone dislike you, or even hate you because you have an attribute, a possession, or a privilege that they want to take away from you or control? Yahya Jammeh wants to control our freedoms as enshrined within our constitution and even our God given rights i.e. freedom of speech and assembly just to give example. But equally we have serious envious people amongst us whose characteristic the Author tried to explain above. The emotion of envy can be triggered in circumstances that involve a social comparison where someone perceives that you are famous, seeking position, likable by others and many other positive attributes, or attainments that diminish their own status and thus become a threat to them. These kind of qualities God gave others triggers hate in the minds of envious people who want everything to center around them. Through their campaign of hate and lies, other people listening to them will wrongly glamorize or idealize who you are or what you possess. These are the flavours of envy and Jealousy due to their ugliness and dirtiness. We must expose envious and jealous people amongst us if we aspire to achieve our targeted goal of removing tyranny and dictatorship in the Gambia.
In other to end tyranny and dictatorship we must unite to shame these mongers amongst us regardless they are our friends, buddies, relatives or whatever. We must never allow any person or few individuals to deter us from uniting. Never must we forget they have different tactics and they come in different forms and fashion. Any person or group of persons, who left the Jammeh camp which is our opponent camp, let us welcome them with open arms so that we can encourage more deserters. Many could be waiting to see the green light to cross boarder and jump ship into our camp. We must be accommodating as that is the only way to defeat dictatorship. Ghana, Nigeria, and now even Burkinafasso is succeeding because opposition groups against their tyrants opened their arms to deserters not send them away buy mere accusations that they are ex Jammeh enablers when most of us and our families are still Jammeh enablers despite we shout in the still struggle against Jammeh camp……. to continued
By Bamba Sering Mass (UK)