Friday, 24 September 2010

Dr Buhari Sillah is a sound intellectual

Read him:
Promote Unity and Justice in Senegambia- Dr. Bukhari Sillah
Dear editors of Maafanta,It has been six years since I stopped writing or contributing to the Gambia online newspapers. I used to write comments on Gambia-L, and until I stopped in 2004 I discussed and commented only on topical economic issues given my training in economics, and that has become my natural bias, and I love it, because it saves me from discussing persons. But I cannot resist the temptaions of writing comments or making contributions to your online paper whenever I read Maafanta.In particular, I have been moved by recent postings by Suntu Touray on Mandinka and Bamba Mass' piece on Fulani tribe's unifying role and contribution in the spreading of knowledge in the Senegambia region, which was brilliantly commented on by Essa Bokarr Sey.
I appreciate very much these types of comments and contributions. I commend the editors of Maafanta for the good job and salute these three writers for their postings. People should know that Senegambia is very special in the world that it has beautiful tribes that live as one. For example, one is mandinka when one lives in mandinka-kunda, and one is Fulani when one lives in Fula-kunda. I remember, during my childhood days I used to speak only fulani and started my education in Fulani, and Fulanis called me Bokarr, not my Mandinka name, which is Bukari, which also is not my Jahanka name, Bukhari. My guardian was living then in Fula-kunda, and he spoke Fulani even with his family members until we moved to Mandinka-kunda, where we reverted back to speaking Mandinka.
I did not knnow the English name 'tribe', what I knew then was 'Kabilo', which does not mean tribe, because the 'Kabilo' setting can consist of Fulani, Mandinka, Wolof, Jola, etc.I also remember when I visited my aunt in Dippa-Kunda, Serre-kunda ( now it can be called Wolof-Kunda), I greeted them upon arrival in Mandinka, and they replied in Wolof.
I told them I could not speak Wolof, and my aunt got uneasy with my reply and she said: 'my son here is Wolof-kunda, we live with Wolof, it is natural that we speak Wolof, and you will soon become one of us'. The other beauty besides the 'Kabilo' setting is the 'Dang-kouto' or simply 'Dangkuto' (Covenant) that our founding fathers of the people of Senegambia signed and promised to uphold ,no matter what comes, among different kabilos and Kundas for conflict resolutions and peace maintenance.
These Covenants give the people the power to prevail on the two sides of any conflict, tell them the truth and then ask them to abide by the peace covenants, and they will.I believe it is our modern educational training that make us become conscious of tribalism. It has never existed before, if it had existed before we would not have had inter tribal-cross surnames of today. Finally, I once bumped into a Cameroonian professor of history, who was talking vigorously and enthusiastically about the Mali Empire, I said to myself why this professor was so emotional about a tribe to which he did not belong. After his speech, I went to him and asked about his emotion. He said ' do you think Mali Empire is only for the mandinka people? No, it is an African Civilization, it is one people speaking various languages'.And my little research later confirms the professor's assertion.
The Kabilos and Kundas could then be micro structures that were mirroring the macro structures of the Mali Empire.We should be proud of our great founding fathers of the people of Senegambia, we should be their good sons and daughters, who contniue to promote their legacies of covenants, Kundas and Kabilos, not tribe, which is an imported termilogy and idealogy. Again, I thank those who promote unity and justice in the Senegambia.
Dr. Bukhari SillahDepartment of Economics King Saud University, RiyadhSaudi Arabia
I hope many more Gambian academicians can grace the media with valuable comments so that,, we can all learn from each other. No one is an
Island, and knowledge is a sea of water the dept of which is beyond man's comprehension.
Thanks Dr Sillah for the unifying comments

Momodou Syngle Nyassi of UDP talk Tough against the dictator

Saul Saidykhan on Enter Gambia an explosive book

Saul Saidykhan is a sensible and entertaining writer on equal measure. His writing ability is among the best of Gambian writing. I rank him along with folks like Lamin J Darboe, Hamjatta, ML Sillah, Galleh, Foday Samateh and the like. Saul made simple statements readable, eloquent and fanciful.
The explanation of Berkeley Rice's book on the Gambia is timely and relevant for correcting lies against elements of the former regime. In fact, Saul's exposure is not in any way absolving the wrongs of the PPP, but setting the records straight on many propaganda malice against the characters of the early PPP pioneers. And the ethnic maligning which resulted in distorting the facts on the early days of Gambia's rebirth was a crime worth rectifying. Saul should be commended for serialising a book hardly available in the market.
The pains he took to digest the records of Berkeley Rice is noteworthy and a patriotic endeavour.
His analysis should be made available to our future generations so that, they too can come to the realisation of facts no matter who dislike it to be known. Kudos Saul for a fantastic job.

Below are the links to part one to four of his fruitful scintillating narratives:
Part 1
Part 2

Part 3
And the final part 4

Thanks Saul for taking us on an enlightening journey.


Buba did a wonderful interview with Freedom newspaper. This is one of the best freedom did. Buba was in top form and articulate and very rational.

Thanks Buba for exposing the dictator's madness.

Wednesday, 22 September 2010


The error that, is was brutal Islam that force Mandingos to abandon their traditional animism is false. The kings of Manden as early as Sunjatta were Muslim back in the 12 to 13 century. The Kaabu Mandingos later contaminated their beliefs to the point that, the later generation adopted the prevalent local animism.
Below is the short history of Mansa Musa:

Musa I (Mansa Musa)

Sankore Mosque in Timbuktu, built of mud by traditional construction methods.
The first ruler from the Laye lineage was Kankan Musa, also known as Kango Musa. After an entire year without word from Abubakari II, he was crowned Mansa Musa. Mansa Musa was one of the first truly devout Muslims to lead the Mali Empire. He attempted to make Islam the faith of the nobility, but kept to the imperial tradition of not forcing it on the populace. He also made Id celebrations at the end of Ramadan a national ceremony. He could read and write Arabic and took an interest in the scholarly city of Timbuktu, which he peaceably annexed in 1324. Via one of the royal ladies of his court, Musa transformed Sankore from an informal madrasah into an Islamic university.
This established close links with other great centers of Islamic learning, with whom it exchanged teachers and students. The academy did not only teach Islamic Studies but also science. Ibn Battuta (1304 to 1368) visited Timbuktu (1352–1353) and praised its scholarship. In 1324, a Mandinka general known as Sagmandir also put down yet another rebellion in Gao.
Mansa Musa’s crowning achievement was his famous pilgrimage to Mecca, which started in 1324 and concluded with his return in 1326.
Accounts of how many people and how much gold he spent vary. All of them agree it was a very large group (the mansa kept a personal guard of some 500 men), and he gave out so many alms and bought so many things that gold’s value in Egypt and the Near East depreciated for 12 years. When he passed through Cairo, historian al-Maqurizi noted "the members of his entourage proceeded to buy Turkish and Ethiopian slave girls, singing girls and garments, so that the rate of the gold dinar fell by six dirhams."
Musa was so generous that he ran out of money and had to take out a loan to be able to afford the journey home. Musa's hajj, and especially his gold, caught the attention of both the Islamic and Christian worlds. Consequently, the name of Mali and Timbuktu appeared on fourteenth century world maps.
While on the hajj, he met the Andalusian poet and architect Es-Saheli. Mansa Musa brought the architect back to Mali to beautify some of the cities. Mosques were built in Gao and Timbuktu along with impressive palaces also built in Timbuktu. By the time of his death in 1337, Mali had control over Taghazza, a salt producing area in the north, which further strengthened its treasury.
Mansa Musa was succeeded by his son, Maghan I. Mansa Maghan I spent wastefully and was the first lackluster emperor since Khalifa. But the Mali Empire built by his predecessors was too strong for even his misrule and passed intact to Musa’s brother, Souleyman in 1341.

Monday, 20 September 2010

Kaabu is Mandingo for Kaa Bung

Kaabu from historical narrations means Kaa Bun (to stone or throw). This is in reference to the throw of spears, bow and arrows. Kaabu is also a direction for North. Tilibo is East, Tiligii for West and Niano for South.
Kaabu is as Mandinka as it can be. Actually, the Kaabunkas in those days will not name their command centre with any other language, bearing in mind, settlements like Bere Kolon, Sama etc were typical names etched in the languages. The Fula territories are referred to as Fuladou or Futa. This was never an issue. To remotely manufacture stories about places and events is terribly immature.
Similar name derivatives can be found in the Gambian currency:
Dalasi (Da La So) to sew a costume for wrestlers. The underlining meaning is rooted in the difficult task of wrestling.
Cassamance (Caa Sama Caasii) to go settle at a place for farming.
The above are typical example of unique ethnic names associated to places and things. This can be found in Serere, Wollof, Jola, Fula etc.
It is incredibly haste to start making up stuffs about other people's history

Teddy says...Tribute to Ousainou Darboe


Teddy Roosevelt:At Sobonne,

"It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena; whose face is marred by the dust and the sweat and blood; who strives valiantly, who errs and come up short again and again; who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, and spends himself in a worthy cause; who at best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who, at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly; so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory or defeat."

We are proud of you Darboe for standing up when nickles ruled the day, when the sprinkle of dust crave relevance, when hardly popular figures wish to emerged. You rise up, taking the mantle, not fearing even though it was your first involvement in direct politics. Your personal fortune overlap over D8million, your calibre in your field were few, all major contracts fell at your feet, you decline a prestigious job with the U.N, all in the quest of biting the bullet. Let macabre fools glee at their own impotence. However, you knew Ousainou that, it will evaporate because dictators aim to impoverish the people 'Aristotule says'.

You were arrested, persecuted and tried. You remain the calmer of the scared, the figure to be trusted when some wish war and blood. fight on comrade, this struggle is not a fashion contest, not an oratory melodrama, it is a simple dictatorship.... a kind prevalent all over our continent. You have made the calls, the approach for togetherness, hold your head high, we are with you...who can be more inclusive than you? Only chicken heads will blame you for the acts of a dictator's crimes. But then, clowns come in all shapes and sizes. Tribute to Lawyer Ousainou Darboe

Sunday, 19 September 2010

The Paradox of the Dictator's Children

The Boy who wants to belong and be Cool
Spuro’s helplessness stinker all the neighbourhood. Wandering aimlessly, glancing from left to right unperturbed by the loud horns. He wishes to find a saviour, a perfect superman.

Spuro is a weak guy himself, however he apportioned his cake neatly amongst his cousins and near friends.. Everybody he came across feels just like him—impotent, but mischievous.
Whenever he eats to his full, the first thought to square in his skull is shout. That has been around his vicinity since childhood. The common currency is screaming and slapping one’s chest in happy and sad times... getting noticed is all that matters.
But for Spuro, he doesn’t think by himself. The imaginary love seeking spurns him to say daft things. The coy on lovers would giggle, hoping that, the enemies don’t caught them and conning Spuro doesn’t get it either.
Every now and then, he would scream his lungs out customarily fire balling the audience... Micheal Bubele is Maad. Passersby would say, yeah right, you need your behind checking. However, since Spuro is courting the neo-twins, in which case no one have to tell the other what to think of the others. The others are just anyone who is not the twins’ period. They will cover their mouth and mutter, well done Spuro.
Then a few weeks will pass, Spuro will tug into wet maize meal, with clumsy okra soup. The delicacy has always reawakened his faculties to unreasonableness. After drowning a few glass of juice, his taught will wander to attracting the attention of the difficult audience, the neo-twins.
Spuro would scream, Bamba Dala is a woman!!!. On lookers will surprisingly shake their heads, feeling disturb by the foolish noise. But Spuro’s main aim is to again attract the attention of the Twins, yet no public endorsement. Sad and dejected, he will retreat back into his shell, curiously hoping, the neo-twins will tap him on the shoulder and say, ‘buddy, thanks, that was brilliant’. But it never happens.
Spuro’s slave mentality regularly lands him in contradicting quagmire, who likes me here he will quietly murmur? “Am i stupid or what?”’ Go away a voice would say.’ Then Spuro gets offended. He will desperately repeat his claim, Bamba Dala is a lady!! Sam Jeeti is the man, yeah.
Then a quiet voice retort, “Which Sam Jeeti?” He said, “he is the bravest tall fellow I have ever seen.” The quiet voice asked curiously, “Why he is brave?” I can’t say, I just think so.
Then shut up and go find out why you think he’s brave because the hyena is still hunting down the road Sam Jeeti lives. In fact, Sam Jeeti enjoys the castle of the Hyena, he is no different from anyone. Stop making a fool out of yourself, you’re not even funny.
Tell you what, all brave men of Fan-Tunbung are dead, therefore die and be brave you fagot.
Spuro became surprise that, no neo-twins or their wannabe stood up for him. Why is that the case he sighed?
He sat in front of his broken mirror, in deep thought, something alien to him. Thinking, why is it so hard to please the twins? I like saying all the bad and foul things for them but no response. I know they like it deep down, how can I join the club?
I better start thinking about that instead of getting fired at needlessly.
Spuro then did something he never wishes to do, asked himself a question.
Will I go home and be a brave lion boy for any reason? He is still thinking for a miracle answer.
Life goes on. The paradox of the dictator’s children.

Wednesday, 15 September 2010


An interesting clip. The PDOIS duo seems to be having soft spot for the Junta members going by the speech,

They may reject joining the military government but the coup wasn't bad at all from the words they uttered.
Below is the Video transcript:
Sedia Jatta’s views During a Swedish TV interview of the Military Rule 1994-1996
“the outside world should take note of what is happening here internally. All that they can do is secondary to what we can do. Even if they have millions and billions of Dollars, as long as the conditions are not propitious to change, Dollars cannot this place. As long as we are working to bring about the necessary change in spite of the difficulties to bring about the necessary change, the outside world should take note of that.
Of course the (Junta) may have limitations of how to manage society, but they will not deliberately destroy this society, because they are part and parcel of this society. So from that point of view, one can deal with them, one can communicate with them, until such time that they see reason of transferring this set up to a more acceptable set up, which is a democratic government.
Halifa Sallah Voice to the Swedish TV crew during the Military Rule of Yahya Jammeh
“If any ambassador had been following events properly, unlike many countries, here people have been vocal, they didn’t just accept things as they are, people have been challenging the situation to a point where they have establish a relationship of respect with the government which exist, and that is the most you can expect from a government. And where there exist such respect, it can be converted into something else, into the basis for national dialogue to solve the problem.
The voter registration is full of fraud. Places like Serrekunda which has over 200,000 people has no street names and proper addresses, which mean a voter, can register in any place. Since it will be difficult to have proper elections, therefore it is essential to constitute an electoral commission which will look into electoral fraud and in shaping a good electoral system. Now is that one suggestion...”

The fears within the journalistic community is that, the boys will leave a better legacy if they go back to the Barracks, but hanging unto to power and transforming themselves will make them know power has its draw backs.

Thursday, 2 September 2010

Bloggers attack... Willain Hague

Although I cannot stand the right press and tuff politicians. I believe that, the rumours on the sexuality of Try big heater Hague is uncalled for. He is happily married. Why prey into his private life? The guy is not Gay.
The media need to leave himone. The rumours was started by the blogerr's sphere. Guys and girls, it is not easy answering questions about issues like this.
Let Hague live his life man. Go Willaim!

BBC coverage of the tyrant Yahya Jammeh's birth day

After Ramadan, God-willing, i will state my findings on the Islamic understanding of tyranny and the advise of scholars.
This area need to be made clear so that, our people cannot be fooled by the idiots based on distortion and preying on ignorance.