President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, now Head of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), is scheduled this Friday to lead a high-power delegation to Banjul. The delegation will include Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari and former Ghanaian President John Mahama.
Their mission: to persuade Mr. Yahya Jammeh, former President of The Gambia, to accept the December 1 election results and step aside so that President-Elect Adama Barrow may take up his post in keeping with the will of the Gambian people.
All of us are praying for the success of this crucial mission.
We once again appeal to Mr. Jammeh to accept the verdict of his people and step aside in order that President-Elect Barrow may assume his post.
We pray that Mr. Jammeh will heed the voice of reason and DO THE RIGHT THING—step aside. He must realize that this life is short and each individual is called in his or her own time to play his or her part and leave the stage for others to carry on.
This, we submit, is a biological reality. William Shakespeare, the great English playwright and poet, acknowledged this in his classic poem, “The Seven Ages of Man.” “All the world’s a stage,” he wrote in “As You Like It.” “And all the men and women merely players. They have their exits and their entrances, and one man, in his time, plays many parts, his acts being of seven ages.”
But long before Shakespeare, Almighty God set the rules of human existence. When it comes to human life, He prescribed it thus: “Three score and ten, and by reason of strength, four score”—80 years. God also decreed, “It is appointed unto man once to die, and after death, the judgment.” No human, no matter how powerful or how blessed, can change that.
All this simply means that all earthly things, of the plant, animal or material kingdom, are finite—meaning, they will all one day come to an end. For in God‘s kingdom, nothing lasts forever. Mr. Jammeh himself knew it was a big joke when once he declared, “I will stay in power for a billion years, if I want.”
Jammeh, as a devout Muslim, knows fully well that Allah and no one else “has the whole world in His hands.”
Those who do not believe this have only to look down through history. All empires, administrations, even civilizations rise and fall. Why? Because nothing lasts forever—nothing except the Word of God. The Bible says, Heaven and earth will pass away, but my Word shall not pass away.”
All we are saying in this Editorial is that Mr. Jammeh should listen to the voice of reason and realize that nothing lasts forever—only the Word of God. Even the most diehard atheist will eventually come to realize that his non-belief in Almighty God is finite (limited, predetermined). When his or her time comes, he or she will go. Nothing can stop that. Only the Word of God will stand forever.
Have we ever heard of Julius Caesar, who once controlled most of the world, and all the other Caesars? Or Queen Victoria, who as an absolute monarch ruled Britannia for over 60 years? And what happened in 1945, after World War II? Britain, until then the world’s ruling power, lost her position as the balancer of power following the emergence of the world’s first super power, the United States of America (USA). And after Julius and Ethel Rosenberg sold the atomic secret to the Soviet Union—for which they paid the price of treason—execution—a second super power emerged. That ignited the Cold War. But how long did the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) last? From the late 1940s to 1989 when the Berlin Wall collapsed, and the Soviet Republics, too, came tumbling down.
Alas! Even the West, which is holding fast to Western civilization, will pass, for it, too, is finite.
So, Mr. Jammeh, you are too small to buck (kick) history. Don’t even try it, for it is only a matter of time and you, too, like the rest of us, will be gone!
So go in peace and with respectability. The world and most especially your people, the Gambian people, will praise you for it.