So professor Ba Banutu Gomez had enough of the US of A. He decided to pack his bags, return back to the Gambia and invest his savings into a business college. Ain’t nothing wrong with that if you ask me. What gets under my skin though is the tendency of African intellectuals returning home and all of a sudden converting to the religion of sycophancy to fit in the system. It usually start with subtle statements like this one that Gomez is reported as saying in the point newspaper:
Professor Ba Banutu-Gomez, the proprietor of the newly built Bantu Business College, has called on all Gambians outside The Gambia to stop focusing on politics, and instead focus on developing the country regardless of any political ideology one may have, adding that if the country is the centre of our hearts and thinking, we can work together even though we may have different political ideologies.
The good professor is smart enough to know that is hogwash. If the politics is dictatorial and authoritarian, development ain’t gonna happen. But that is not important to him at this moment. He has a plan and an investment, the success of his venture depends on the goodwill of the political masters. So he wouldn’t want to do anything to raise their ire. That is smart business for him, but to tell the rest of us to stop focusing on politics is disingenuous on his part as well. Development doesn’t happen in a vacuum. Sustainable development needs a stable political environment to incubate and flourish. That is what loud mouths like yours truly yearn for and Mr. Gomez knew this all along. The Gambia no matter how you slice it isn’t going to develop with a business college here and there until the political environment change.
Talking of holier than thou, the professor went on to make the following absurd comment:
“I challenge any Gambian, if you care about your own people, your own country, then you should come back and invest in your own country, not only in education but in any form.
Who said you have to go back to a country before you could be counted as caring for and investing in it. I bet most of the students that can afford to pay the tuition to get into his college will have the money sent to them from abroad. If that is not investing in the development of a nation, I will like to take a class from the professor to learn just what people like me need to do save for packing our drawers, boarding a plane to “bilad-a-sudan”.
Do we care about our people and country. Sure we do. Without our remittances, that place will be a war zone. The remittances feed, clothe and is responsible for the construction boom , which employ thousands of people…get the drift professor?
Good luck with your venture, but save us the sermon.