President Jammeh endorsed by party for 2016 presidential run

President Yahya Jammeh

President Yahya Jammeh

The ruling Alliance for Patriotic Reorientation and Construction and the opposition People’s Democratic Organisation for Independence and Socialism party have become the first parties to select their presidential candidates ahead of the December polls.

The Gambians will head to polls to elect a new president on December 1.

The APRC supporters and card-carrying members have converged in Kaninlai for a congress yesterday February 25 where President Jammeh was chosen as the ruling party’s most favoured Presidential candidate.

The party supporters and top dogs have expressed satisfaction with what they said was President Jammeh’s “impressive” development track record in the past 20 years he has served as leader of The Gambia.

The APRC also amended their party constitution to bring it in line with the country’s new electoral law that was passed by the National Assembly and signed into law by the President in July last month.

The Gambian leader who came to power through a bloodless coup in July 1994 has since won four consecutive elections.

He will be serving his 5th term in office if re-elected in December when Gambians will head to polls to elect a new leader.

Halifa Sallah

                                        Halifa Sallah

Meanwhile, the PDOIS also announced Thursday that it has selected Halifa Sallah as their candidate.

A sociologist and politician, Sallah has been nominated to lead the opposition People’s Democratic Organisation for Independence and Socialism (PDOIS) in this year’s presidential election.

Mr Sallah, 63, who led the PDOIS in the 2006 general elections in which he secured 6 per cent of the overall vote cast, was elected by the party’s central committee on Tuesday.

He will be unvieled to party members at a political rally next month, PDOIS has said.

The two parties became the first to have selected their parties’ presidential candidates for the December polls.

The Independent Electoral Commission did announced few weeks ago that it will de-register political parties that fail to regularize their status with the electoral authority according to the 2015 new electoral amendment act.

Meanwhile, the two most popular opposition parties in the country, National Reconciliation Party and the United Democratic Party which carries the majority are yet to announce their candidate.

The leader of the UDP, Lawyer Ousainou Darboe, who led them during the past elections, has passed the constitutional age limit of 65.

Darboe will be 67 at the time of elections.

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