|Members of the newly-formed Interparty Committee on Opposition Unification (ICOU), enjoined front-runners and supporters of opposition parties to unite in order to vote out the ruling party.
In a press briefing held yesterday at TANGO Hall, the secretary general of the Committee, Musa Sonko, said: “A united force to challenge the ruling APRC party in the December 1 presidential election is the best option for defeating President Jammeh at the polls”
He besieged opposition leaders to fulfill the wish of Gambian people who are craving for opposition alliance as the presidential race draws nearer.
He said the realities on the ground and the unleveled political terrain, couple with other pressing issues, should spur Gambian opposition to alliance in order to effect change in the coming election.
“The deteriorating economic situation causing immense suffering to all Gambians is unsustainable and unbearable and, therefore, needs urgent and concerted efforts to restore the ailing economy.
“In order to remain united in the pursuit of our collective objectives, we have adopted the principle and policy of putting the interest of our country first before that of any party or individual,” he said.
“We urge all our diverse party supporters and members to give the committee maximum support, for the path to The Gambia’s salvation and redemption lies in the cooperation and unity of the opposition parties.
“The committee sees the hope of tomorrow in these patriotic citizens in whose hands, more than ours, will rest the final success or failure of our cause.”
He added: “So whether you are a supporter or sympathizer, high standard of strength and sacrifice is required from you, but with good conscience. Our only sure reward and history, the final judge of our deeds, let us all go forth together in fortitude and rescue the country we all love so dearly, knowing that here on earth, God’s work must truly be our own.”
Kebba F. Singhateh, chairman of the ICOU, called on the opposition to unite, saying “if necessary put up a single candidate against President Jammeh in order to effect change”.
“We have adopted persistence and consistency in the pursuit of our principle, resolutions and discipline in the execution of our common methods of application to facilitate the smooth running of the affairs of the interparty committee.
“There is unanimity to the pursuit of genuine electoral reforms, as has been demanded by the group of six opposition parties after unity has been achieved, as this is the most important agenda of the committee.
“Even if the opposition parties agree on a single candidate, that candidate’s chances of winning would be very slim due to what he described as “bad electoral laws and rules governing the electoral process,” he added.
The ICOU is made up of the United Democratic Party (UDP), the National Reconciliation Party (NRP), the National Convention Party (NCP), the Gambia Progress Democratic Party (GPDP), the Gambia Moral Congress (GMC), the National Democratic Action Movement (NDAM) and the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) and some independent contestants.
Lawyer Ousainou Darboe, leader of the UDP, Hamat Bah, leader of NRP, among other representatives and sympathizers from various political parties, were in attendance.