Thursday, September 17, 2009
The Task Ahead!
Even as I rode along Southern Senegal’s Cassamance Region, heading for the capital Dakar, struggling between leaving behind my ghastly experience of the previous day and the life that awaited me at my virtually unknown destination, I had a third tormenting concern as I realized rather faintly that I would have to put up with another mucky task to accomplish – the chore of countering the obvious voice of discontent that was bound to radiate from the many people who would find it difficult to forgive me for my part in the propaganda campaign for the APRC government.
I was largely preoccupied with thoughts of what I would tell the world to have them convinced that I am not to blame for the anger and pain they derived from Observer during my stint.
And when I conceived the idea of Justice For The Press, I had no doubt that it was going to be the subject of such attacks as I am experiencing presently. But hey, it never crossed my mind that my own very former colleagues at the Observer would be part of such a campaign. I thought it would be a distasteful recipe for stark revelations that would emanate regarding the dealings of certain people. I feel immensely pressured not to allow my emotion to countermand my wholeheartedly none spiteful intent of discussing relevant issues. The totally uncalled-for response I got from some disrespectful editor at the Observer the other day, about the entire Gambian media being angry with me, served as an awakening experience. I would not publish that comment on my blog for only one reason - not because it is hash on me, I do not expect them of all people to praise me, but because they were outrageously disrespectful for the taste of the readership I envisage. But I hope that my response has sunk well in place.
Matter-of-factly, I am not out to waste my precious time responding to strayed comments from people who purely seek undeserved cheap popularity. Rather, I will dedicate my time and effort, like I promised, to highlighting issues relevant to countering the continued oppressive moves against the press in The Gambia. I have quite a task ahead. What I want is to raise issues and instigate debate around them - subjective debate. That is what Gambia needs today.
If anybody has any point against me they are free to come up with them. But they have to be genuine, not merely based on hate or disrespect.
My next issue will deal on how Observer was cleansed with the coming of Neneh Macdoull, and how she touched the seeming untouchables. Watch out for that.