The President of The Gambia, Mr. Adama Barrow turned down a request by the national assembly to address proper matters raised in his State of the Nation address earlier on the 19th of September 2019. No reason has been advanced so far.
PMs have previously, argued that they would not debate on the State of the nation address until the president appears to listen and answer to their queries.
The speaker of the Assembly, Mariam Jack-Denton on Thursday informed the Parliament that the Vice President, Dr. Isatou Touray currently attending the 74th Session of the UNGA annual meetings would instead represent the President.
Until his election in 2016 under a coalition team, President Barrow was entirely unknown to the Gambian political space.
His educational background has been a subject of public scrutiny. Many fear that the embattled President absented himself from parliament on the basis that PMs wanted to subject him to public ridicule for his poor expression in the English language.
This is not the first time that the president has been placed on the media (especially on social media) for his weak understanding of the English language. English is the official language of The Gambia.
Mr. Barrow’s highest education is a high school leaving certificate, however, there are speculations that his grades were poor. Claims of the President having qualifications in real estate have also been advance. The educational requirement for the presidency in The Gambia is a high school certificate with no specific least grade.
Following this incident, calls for the use of local languages in the House of Representatives have been reiterated.
Senior Political Science lecturer at The University of The Gambia, described the President as lacking the “intellectual pedigree” to govern The Gambia. The presidency has since then moped against it.
Amid slow pace of general reforms, there is mounting dissatisfaction among Gambians against the transitional government of Mr. Barrow who is constantly, faced with corruption allegations.
He has earlier promised to rule for only three (3) years and some Gambian are determined to remove him through a protest in December 2019.