The last contention raised by Mr Daffeh is as follows:
Thirdly, Mr Daffeh argued that making reference to the amendment of section 65 of the Constitution to include elections after three years was an afterthought but not a matter embodied in the Coalition agreement.
It is important to help refresh his memory to prove that the Coalition agreement hinges on a three-year term followed by election in which the candidate of the Coalition who won the election would neither participate nor support any other candidate. The aim was to give The Gambia a new start after Coalition victory by ensuring that there is a level ground for mufti party democracy.
He should be able to recall that the issue of section 65 came when the spokesperson of the Coalition informed President Barrow of the need to have a vice president and he appointed Madam Fatoumatta Tambajang. Once the spokesperson made the announcement there was an immediate uproar alleging that the appointee was above 65 years and was not qualified to hold the office of vice president. In his press briefing, the spokesperson is on record saying that section 70 of the constitution requires the vice president to have the same qualifications as the president as provided by section 62 of the constitution and that The president was informed of the uproar and would consider the merits of the allegations against Fatoumatta Tambajang’s appointment as vice president. This is what barred her from being sworn in as vice president until the amendment of section 62 of the constitution to remove the 65 year upper age limit barrier for qualification for election.
The reason why the spokesperson advised the president to appoint a vice president soon after his inauguration in Dakar is because the APRC still had an absolute majority in parliament due to the requirements of section 96 of the constitution which makes it mandatory for elections of National Assembly members to take place four months after a presidential election. Hence the Speaker of the National Assembly would have become the president of the country if anything happened to president Barrow that put his life at risk.
It is also important to point out to Mr Daffeh that section 65 was in the radar of opposition parties since they put their demands in 2015 and forwarded them to Jammeh and the partners of the country. We demanded for section 65 to be amended and provision be made for election to be held within 90 days in the occurrence of a vacancy.
We therefore hope that Mr Daffeh would acknowledge without hesitation that the call for the amendment of section 65 to enable elections to be held within 90 days of the occurrence of vacancy was not an afterthought but a logical offshoot of the agreement for elections to be held after President Barrow’s resignation in three years. Should he need any other proof we will be obliged to provide evidence to back our assertions.