By Saikou Suwareh Jabai
The Panafrican Corps of Electoral Observers (CPOE), noted with great satisfaction the results issued from the polls, saying it bore the fruits of the maturity of sovereign Gambian people that have expressed freely their will without pressure and discrimination.
The organisation unveiled their take on the just-concluded presidential election in a press briefing on Monday 5th December, 2016 at Serekunda.
The Chief of Mission, Mr. Mahamat Souleymane Doukhane, said the official results were announced according to the Electoral Laws of The Gambia by the Independent Electoral Commission on the 2nd December 2016, with the election of Mr. Adama Barrow with 45.5% of the votes cashed follow by Yahya Jammeh, outgoing President with 36.7% and Mr Mama Kandeh with 17.8%.
He said based on the outcome of the great democracy manifested by the Gambian people during the Presidential election of December 015 2016, their mission noticed with great attention the courage, patience, determination and Fair Play from the political actors in The Gambia who have started a ball rolling for the African Continent to learn from.
Taking into consideration all aspects of the electoral process, he added that their mission in The Gambia applaud the sincerity and honesty of the process according to Gambian laws.
“In conformity with regular holding of Presidential election in the country, the Republic of The Gambia organized the 2016 Presidential polls to cement the democratization pr6cess accompanied by a political will combined with positive contribution from all stakeholders in the country,” he said.
Mr. Mahamat Souleymane Doukhane noted that this very important exercise has attracted interest from Africa and the entire World due to the free information received from the different candidates vying for the highest position in the country during their campaign trails in every part of the country.
He said: “We have examined and analyzed the speeches of the candidates thus relatively positive but in some cases putting the traditional peace of The Gambia in question.”
While commending the ‘on the spot’ counting initiative, the Chief of Mission stated that the election was held without interruption and it was conducted according to international standards of free, inclusive, democratic, free expression and transparent.
“We urge The Gambian Political class to consolidate the maturity and responsibility that the Gambian people have demonstrated during the electoral process and every actor should endeavor to jealously safe guard the peace and national unity that prevail in the country. It was a Win-Win situation for the gallant sons of The Gambia mapping a positive point in the democratization process in the Gambia,” he added.
In conclusion, the Mr. Mahamat Souleymane Doukhane, called on the Gambian Political Class and all the national actors to work together for the new era in The Gambia championed by the looser and the winner of the presidential election through the spirit of fair play and patriotism.
He urged them to inculcate the values of dialogue during any reforms in order to consolidate the peace which is the first value for any democracy.