By Muhammed L. Bojang
The Manding Network has vowed to advocate for and promote the rights of Mandinkas as well as promote the heritage of the ethnic group.
Speaking during a press conference held at Tabokoto on Saturday, Abdou Njie, president of the network said politics and ethnicity are far apart but both sleep in the same room. He added that belonging to an ethnic group does not restrict someone from supporting a political party.
“Every Gambian has a right to support any political party of their choice,” he went on. However, he said associating their network to any political party in the country is wrong.
In his contribution, Kebba Kinteh, honorary father of the network said they will advocate for the Mandinka heritage and rights.
In his turn, the national coordinator of the network, Tamba J.Y. Camara, said they plan to embark on a nationwide tour, which he said would include elders of other ethnic groups in a bid to promote peacebuilding as well as bring all the ethnic groups under one umbrella to harmonize the peaceful coexistence amongst tribes in politics, preach justice, peace and good governance in the country.
“We believe in peace and tolerance and we do not and will not subscribe to any fanatic group that is bent on bullying, extortion, and falsehood. The Gambia belongs to all of us and no one ethnic group can claim ownership of this land,” he remarked.
The Manding Network is an apolitical group open to all Gambians to join irrespective of ethnic background. It is set up to revive the lost heritage and traditions of the Mandinka ethnic group and African heritage.
The idea to form the network was conceived in March 2017.