(JollofNews) – President Yahya Jammeh of the Gambia has used the anniversary of his 22 years in power to renew his commitment to bring more prosperity and development to the door steps of his people.
Addressing school children on Friday afternoon at Arch 22, Banjul, Mr Jammeh said the celebration was a day of reflection on how far the Gambia has gone in terms of developement.
He said when he first took over power, many people branded the Gambia as doomed and said the regime was not going to develop the country. But with Allah on his the side, the country has achieved more in terms of development in his tenure than it ever managed to do in the 31 years of ex-President Jawara and 400 years of British rule.
He therefore thanked all those who supported him unconditionally since he assumed the mantle of leadership.
Mr Jammeh added that despite his achievements, a lot more work needs to be done to move the country forward. He called on Gambians to be more pro-active and hard-working.
While also calling on Gambians to embrace Islam and turn to Allah, Mr Jammeh expressed gratitude to the youths for their steadfastness in upholding the religion, especially during the holy month of Ramadan.
He denounced racism which he said has no place in the 21st century.
“The Gambia is the only country on earth where anybody can walk at anytime without being harassed for his or her race or religion,” he said.
He accused Muslim extremist groups and terrorist organisations who are carrying our evil acts in the name of religion of lacking an understanding of the Islamic fate.
He said there is no compulsion in religion and Muslims must not kill non-Muslims.
“As Christians or Muslims we all know that we are all created by the Almighty Allah and we come from Adam and Eve and should live as one,” Mr Jammeh said.
He called on school children to work hard in school and be exemplary citizens of the Gambia.
The ceremony was attended by thousands of Gambians and dignitaries including guests from the sister countries of Guinea, Sierra Leone, Zimbabwe, Senegal and China and other parts of the sub-region.