The Gambia’s president-elect, Adama barrow has announced he is ready to take office in January, despite the refusal by the West African country’s longtime ruler, President Yahya Jammeh to accept his election loss.
“On the day his term expires, my term as the lawful president of the Gambia begins.“This is the law of the land. My status as incoming president has unquestionable constitutional legitimacy,” barrow said.
President Jammeh had initially surprised Gambians by conceding defeat after 22 years in power, but changed his mind a week later. He alleges vote irregularities that made the December 1 ballot invalid.
On the day his term expires, my term as the lawful president of the Gambia begins.“This is the law of the land.
The crisis has drawn the attention of regional leaders, who on Saturday promised to “take all necessary actions” to enforce the results of Gambia’s election and announced they will attend Barrow’s January 19 inaugurations.
The summit of the Economic Community of West African States also pledged to “guarantee the safety and protection of the president-elect,” who has said he fears for his life.
Meanwhile, the spokesman of the opposition coalition Halifa Sallah in a statement said Jammeh risks being declared illegitimate if he refuses to give up power to Barrow, the winner of the December 1 election.
The statement further read that Jammeh will be treated like a “rebel leader” if he continues to cling to power.
Jammeh seized power in a 1994 coup and has been accused by rights groups of human rights abuses.
BLOG (@absoluteblog) December 17, 2016
His party, the Alliance for Construction and Reorientation, has filed a petition challenging the election results at the Supreme Court. The court, however, has not sat for over a year.