The Secretary General of The People’s Democratic Organisation For Independence and Socialism PDOIS and National Assembly Member for Serrekunda, Honourable Halifa Sallah in a press conference at his party’s bureau in Churchill Town said the President of the republic Adama Barrow should hold press conferences to address issues of national concerns.
Sallah who was talking to journalist about his party’s stand on the Kanilai incident was quizzed about the failure of the Barrow Administration to appoint a Vice President after it has assumed office for six months. He told the journalist to refer his question to the president who should be in a better position to answer. He said it is a constitutional mandate for a Vice President to be sworn-in office in order to act on behalf of the president and not just to appoint someone to oversee the office.
“President Barrow should be holding press conferences when one is isolated for so long you cannot know what is going on the minds of the public. He should be talking to the public,” Halifa Sallah said.
The PDOIS Secretary General said the appointment of a Vice President should be treated with great importance, saying the country was in deep danger when the president was sworn in Dakar without a Vice President. He said under The Gambian Constitution when a President is not in office, the Vice President should assume office and a Speaker of the National Assembly should assume office when a Vice President is not in office. He explained at the time of the political impasse the country was without a Vice President but there was a Speaker of the National Assembly who was a member of the former ruling party.
“Now, If something had happened to President Barrow, it was the APRC Speaker who would have taken charge,” Sallah interjected.
The PDOIS Secretary General and National Assembly Member for Serrekunda was questioned about whether he raised issues of governance particularly the appointment of a Vice President since he was appointed by the President as his Special Adviser on Governance. He answered in the affirmative, saying the president cannot say he does not know what is needed to be done. He said he is a voluntary adviser because his work at the National Assembly will not permit him to function as a special adviser.
Meanwhile, Sallah made recommendations for the President to hold press conferences to address issues of national concerns.