Gambia’s Supreme Court will go ahead with hearing of the presidential poll petition brought by the party of outgoing Yahya Jammeh, the Chief Justice has confirmed.
The Alliance for Patriotic Reorientation and Construction (APRC) appeared before the court on Wednesday after filing processes challenging the outcome of the December 1 polls last week.
According to Chief Justice Emmanuel Falegbe, the case was adjourned because there were not enough judges to sit on the case as a yesterday. Substantive hearing is scheduled for January 10, eight days to the swearing-in of president-elect Adama Barrow.
We are trying to maximize on time.
He further disclosed that a panel of judges had been appointed from Nigeria and Sierra Leone to sit on the case. ‘‘We are trying to maximize on time,’‘ he is quoted to have said.
Falegbe ordered court officials to serve the electoral commission with documents immediately. It will be recalled that security forces took over the headquarters of the electoral commission last week, an act that was roundly condemned by international groups.
Gambia went to the polls on December 1 to elect a new president, Jammeh running for a fifth term came up against two other candidates. The electoral body declared him loser 24 hours later and he called congratulate his main competitor Adama Barrow.
A week later, he rejected the results on national television citing irregularities and ordered a rerun of the polls. International calls for him to step down have fallen on deaf ears while he has called the bluff of an ECOWAS mediation team that visited the country last week.