Hon Billay G. Tunkara
June 28, 2022

Leader of the Gambian delegation to the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Parliament, Billay G. Tunkara has acknowledged that the in-coming President of the Commission Dr. Omar Alieu Touray has a huge task ahead. According to him the president is coming at a time that commissioners to assist him have been reduced from fifteen (15) to Seven (7), a situation that calls for hard work if there would be any transformation.

And added in an interview that to him who much is given much is expected and needs to focus and learn from the mistakes of the out-going president and should work hard to leave a good legacy, by “making Gambia proud”. On the political situation in the West Africa sub-region, he noted that it’s unfortunate that in the 21st century there are still military take overs, and more worrying is the juntas quest to extend their stay in power by thirty-six months without recourse to the Authority of Heads of States and Government.

Dr Omar Alieu Touray

“Dr. Omar Alieu Touray’s presidency should learn from this rampant military take overs and act on the security intelligence reports on member states. Once you see the early warning signs, you should address it before it gets out of hand”. And gave an example of a fact finding mission of the ECOWAS Parliament to the Mali where the then Malian Parliament’s Speaker swore heaven and earth that the country did not have any difficulties but the following day, there was a coup.

“He should be realistic by acting on intelligence reports; the stay in power by the juntas is too much, ECOWAS should set a good example so that others who have coup mentality do not emulate it. If you keep silence it would open the flood gate for others to also attempt”. In addition, ECOWAS should stand resolute to ensure there is a deterrent and that would stop potential coup plotters.

Hon Fatoumatta Njai,

Mr. Billay G. Tunkara, underscored the need for the new administration to have constant engagement with the Community lawmakers as it came out during joint Committee meetings at the 2022 First Ordinary meeting that there were a lot of activities from the Commission were not known to the MPs. “We are the direct representatives of the people, therefore decisions that would affect them we should be involved with it and we should also play a lead role in that advocacy. We from the Gambia would also engage the in-coming Commissioner to let him know what the MPs expect of him”.

On issues to do with elections within the sub-region, he pointed out that, MPs should be brought into the picture and it should not be at the last hour, then the Commission would turn to them to give favorable opinion on documents they bring before them.

Kwaku Sakyi-Danso/Ghanamps.com/Abuja-Nigeria