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  • Writer's pictureSainey Darboe

‘Denigrating the toil and hard work of the CRC is unfortunate’

Updated: Oct 3, 2020

Friday 02 October | GunjurOnline

‘Denigrating the toil and hard work of the CRC is unfortunate’, CRC chair lambasts LJD over plagiarism claims

Following recent comments by top constitutional lawyer, Lamin J. Darbo, who described the rejected draft constitution as fundamentally flawed, the chairman of constitutional review Commision, Cherno Sulayman Jallow has enunciated such denigration of their work is ‘unfortunate’.

Speaking at a presser held at Dawda Kairaba Jawara conference hall and without explicitly mentioning his bete noire, the CRC supremo bristled:

“It is unfortunate that a tiny minority of critics have levelled the claim that the Draft Constitution is plagiarised.The CRC, with its team of experienced draftspersons and international consultants/drafters, has not given any credence to such claims and essentially view the claims as merely stoking emotions to back up the critics’ rejection of the Draft Constitution. Indeed there have been those that never said anything good of the CRC from the time of its inception. For them, it was personal.

The word “plagiarise” relates essentially to copyrighted work that is protected and is used without the rightful authority. No Constitution in this world is copyrighted and that’s for a good reason. Every Constitution, including the Constitution of the USA that has been touted as a model by some critics, has drawn inspiration from some one or more constitutions or other written literature”.

Barrister Lamin J Darbo (L) has argued that the 2020 Draft Constitution was copied largely from the Kenyan constitution

In public interventions on the draft constitution, Lamin J. Darbo has characterized it as “plagiarized”, borrowing heavily with many instances of copy and paste from Kenya constitution.This line of commentary seems to have hit a raw nerve with CRC boss who acerbically countered:

“That is constitution-building! Trying to denigrate the toil and hard work of the CRC on this issue has been most unfortunate.Having been called to national duty and to give our best as experts and professionals in our respective fields, we have unfortunately become the subject of much disrespect, ridicule and insult, much to the consternation of our families and friends.

We must, however, move on, and I can assure everyone that we demit office with our heads high, holding no grudges and harbouring no anger against any person or institution. We feel satisfied with the products of our assignment. We continue to be very proud of our people, their resilience and love for country, but above all for educating us as we journeyed with them through the public consultations. We are confident that all the good intentions that we all have, individually and collectively, to reform our governance system and improve the lives of our people, will someday converge to make us a better people and as one family, one tribe, one Gambia”.

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