By Ousainou J. Sawaneh (Prince Ojee)
Executive Director of the National Youth Council Lamin Darboe was on Wednesday, 24th June 2020 sacked by the Government of the Gambia.
The Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Youth and Sports, Saikou K. Sanyang wrote to Darboe informing him that the Minister of Youth and Sports has concurred with the decision to terminate his services as the acting Executive Director of NYC.
Darboe was requested to hand over the function of the position of acting Executive Director of the National Youth Council to Alhaji Jarju, the Program Manager at the same office.
The accounting officer of the National Youth Council was requested to pay Darboe a month salary in lieu of notice.
The ministry of youth has however failed to state who was behind the decision to terminate Darboe.
However different youth group and right advocates has gone against the dismissal of Mr. Lamin Darboe as the Executive Director by the government.
But Gambians mostly youths online have railed against Mr Darboe’s sudden sacking, as they described him as a man committed to the development and interests of youth in the country.
Madi Jobateh a Human Right advocate has also wrote on his Facebook page describing Lamin Darboe’s dismissal unlawful.
Jobateh was quick to say that Section 13 of the National Youth Council Act gives authority to the President to appoint the Executive Secretary in consultation with ‘the Council and the Public Service Commission’ Adding that the entire Act did not speak about the removal of the Executive Secretary.
“That notwithstanding the dismissal letter of the Executive Secretary cannot come from the Ministry of Youth and Sports. The dismissal letter should come either from the Office of the President or the PSC or the Chair of the National Youth Council. Therefore I take it that the President did not sack Lamin rather it is the Minister who sacked him unilaterally which is illegal” he said.
He added that “for that matter this dismissal letter is unlawful and I urge Lamin Mokendeh Darboe to challenge it in court. At the same time I challenge the Chair of the National Youth Council Dembo Kekendo Kambi and his Council members to lead the youths to challenge this dismissal in court and occupy the streets of The Gambia to protest the dismissal until it is reversed” he challenged.
“The letter says the Minister has agreed with the decision to sack Lamin. Who made the decision? When and where was this decision taken? What are the reasons of the decision? If indeed the so-called decision was made by the President why can’t the Permanent Secretary just indicate that for purposes of transparency and accountability. This is why this illegal termination is also undemocratic and undermines good governance’.
Jobateh further challenged the youth must reject the transmission of the so-called decision to terminate by the Minister and signed by the Permanent Secretary. “It is not the Ministry who should transmit such decision. Rather the letter carrying the so-called termination should have come from OP or PMO or Youth Council, but not from the Ministry” he said.
NYC must be protected from political interference for the purpose of promoting the political objectives of the President and his ruling government.
Side By Side Organization, a registered national youth organization under the National Youth Council, has also joined the rest of the youth fraternity to reject the unjustifiable sacking of Mr. Lamin Darboe, Executive Director of the National Youth Council. “As with all others, the organization has received Lamin’s sackings with utter disbelief and shock”.
The youth organization further said It is therefore unreasonable that such a hardworking, patriotic and competent youth leader will be axed at a mere stroke of a pen without any justifiable reason.
“The government must always listen to the youth and strive to act based on their interests. Certainly, Lamin’s sacking is not in the best interest of the youth” SBSO wrote on their facebook page.