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Jammeh's party goes to court over poll loss, soldiers take over electoral offices

Jammeh's party goes to court over poll loss, soldiers take over electoral offices

Gambia

The ruling party of The Gambia has filed a petition at the Supreme Court, challenging the election of businessman Adama Barrow, AFP news agency has reported.

The Alliance for Patriotic Reorientation and Construction (APRC) fielded longtime leader Yahya Jammeh in the last polls but lost to a coalition candidate, Adama Barrow. Today was the last day of filing as permitted by law.

The Gambia went to the polls on December 1, Jammeh was contesting for his fifth term after coming into office in 1994.

If it goes to court, we can prove every vote cast. The election results were correct, nothing will change that.

According to documents filed at the court, the electoral commission had violated the law and added that opposition leader Adama Barrow was “not duly elected or returned as president, and that the said election was void.”

Electoral offices closed by Jammeh loyalists

Reports indicated that at the time that African heads of states were meeting with outgoing president Jammeh, security details took over the premises of the country’s electoral body.

The Chairperson of the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) confirmed that he was driven out of his office on Tuesday by security personnel.

Alieu Momar Njai has previously been defiant after President Yahya Jammeh’s questioned the validity of the election result, which he lost.

Njai had on Monday stated that the results of the December polls were correct and that Jammeh and his party were likely to lose if they headed to court.

“If it goes to court, we can prove every vote cast. The election results were correct, nothing will change that,” he told Reuters yesterday.

There has been two sets of results, the earlier one announced a day after the polls showed a wide gap between Jammeh and Barrow. An amended one however showed a slim margin between the two candidates.

The original results were as follows:

Adama Barrow won 263,515 votes (45.5%)
President Jammeh took 212,099 (36.7%)
A third party candidate, Mama Kandeh, won 102,969 (17.8%)

The amended results published after the correction:

Adama Barrow won 222,708 votes (43.3%)
President Jammeh took 208,487 (39.6%)
Mama Kandeh, won 89,768 (17.1%)

Meanwhile the Johnson-Sirleaf African leaders aiming to mediate the political crisis have met with both Jammeh and barrow but have yet to issue a statement on their interactions.

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