By Mustapha Ceesay
The Chairman of Gambia’s electoral commission, Alieu Momarr Njai, has again assured Gambian voters and stakeholders, of his commission’s commitment to conduct credible elections, always.
“The Commission would like to re-assure the electorate[s] and all its stakeholders of its continued commitment and resolve to deliver free, fair, transparent, and credible elections to Gambians at all times.”
Njai gave this reassurance at his office, during the handing over of office equipment to the commission by the United Nations Development Programme [UNDP] on 5th February.
This statement by the country’s electoral chief came after the commission published its electoral calendar detailing major activities of the 2021-2023 electoral cycle.
According to the cycle, general registration of voters is scheduled to hold from 14th January to 26th February 2021 ahead of the December presidential election, which the commission postponed; but promised to reschedule. However, it hasn’t yet specify a date for the activity.
Despite the postponement, Njai said “the IEC is working tirelessly towards the conduct of the 2021 general registration of voters, and other key electoral activities in due course.”
The mission of the Independent Electoral Commission [IEC], is to provide the Gambian people with an independent and efficient electoral process that is based on fairness, transparency, and trust; and supported by competent staff for the democratic conduct of all public elections and referenda.
Consequently, Gambia has 16 registered parties. And voters go to the polls every five years to choose their president, members of the parliament and council representatives. Given that, they are expected to vote massively in this year’s December polls, to either maintain the incumbent, Adama Barrow, or show him the exit; as in the case of former president Jammeh in 2016, following his 22 years reign marred by series of allegations of rights violations. Jammeh now lives in exile in Equatorial Guinea, since 2017.