By Momodou Jarju
National Reconciliation Party (NRP) delegates across the country have on Sunday 30 December re-elected Hamat Bah as their party leader and secretary general at Jarra Soma Lower Basic School in Lower River Region (LRR).
Bah is the founder of the party and currently serves as the minister of tourism and culture of the coalition government led by President Adama Barrow.
The congress which started around 5p.m. brought together hundreds of party supporters and delegates across the country and outside The Gambia.
The former vice president, Fatoumatta Jallow Tambajang, Momodou Sabally, former secretary general in Yahya Jammeh’s regime and Seedy Njie, former APRC spokesperson graced the occasion. The congress was witnessed by officials of the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) and some Police Intervention Unit (PIU) personnel.
Musa Sonko, Hon. Samba Jallow, and Hassoum Cham were also re-elected as deputy party leader, campaign manager, and national organizing secretary respectively.
The position for the Administrative Secretary had two nominees. Dam Touray was nominated and the incumbent Pa Bajinka. Both were to head to voting but Hon. Hamat Bah informed the gathering that they would engage both members to discuss for one to leave the other to take up the position. But if they insist, Bah said they have to head to the polls. After few moments of dialogue, Dam Touray withdrew his candidature. He was honoured receiving a rousing applaud from the public.
Another challenge came up in the position of Information and Public Secretary amid the incumbent Pateh Baldeh and one Pa Malick Ceesay. Both of them insisted at first that they should head to the polls. But after a moment of dialogue amid both members and delegates, Ceesay decided to withdrew his stand and allow Baldeh to continue his reign.
Hon. Alagie Mbow was re-elected National Treasurer and Hon. Kebba Bah as National Youth Mobiliser. National women mobilizer and national women chairperson are the two vacant positions differed to the extra ordinary congress that the party would hold in three months from now (90 days). This is due to the party’s constitution not providing positions for deputy for the aforementioned positions which is a requirement of the IEC rules.
They sought the indulgence of the delegates who accepted. In the same vein, some demands made by the youth and women of the party would be raised and deliberated on, according to the party leader. He added they would also review their constitution for amendments. Increasing the percentage of women and youth in the executive is one of the key demands.