United opposition will defeat Jammeh—leading opposition activist

A Gambian Opposition activist and a former minister in Jammeh government said she is in discussion with opposition over a possible political coalition 5 months before major elections.

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After two decades of failure in attempts to form a political alliance against President Yahya Jammeh, there might at last be a glimmer of hope for a coalition 5 months before Gambians head to polls to elect a new leader, opposition activist and a former minister in the APRC government believes.

Fatoumata Tambajang who initiated a discussion between Gambian opposition leaders over the possibility of putting up a single candidate told a United Democratic Party rally at Brikama yesterday that “all the parties have responded to her”.

“I got back in politics to offer my service to my fellow countrymen in helping them get rid of Jammeh… I have spoken to all political parties and I have received their response,” she said.

“We are obliged to come together and all opposition have understood that…”

Failures to form a coalition is as a part of the story of Gambian opposition as is their cries for electoral reforms which won’t be possible until the 2015 Electoral Amendment Act is amended

The 2015 electoral amendment includes a section which clearly states that there can be no electoral reform 6 months to the elections.

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The Torchongambia has also learned that Gambian opposition also have an inter-party committee that meets regularly to discuss issues of mutual interest to the group such as electoral reform and how they can form a coalition.

Tambajang said Gambian opposition will “win President Jammeh at polls” if they back a single candidate while denouncing the incarceration of the UDP leader, Lawyer Ousainou Darboe.

The mass rally came exactly 11 days after the UDP leader and secretary general was slapped with a three-year jail term by Gambia’s High Court for leading a demonstration on April 16.

The meeting of the “new UDP” in a town where the party was first launched, party officials say, was meant to breathe new life into it days after its longstanding leader was jailed.

“UDP is stronger today than it has ever being,” Dembo Bojang told the crowd. “The Gambia people will never betray Darboe.”

The party’s deputy secretary general and party leader demanded the release of their party leader saying his incarceration was “farce and travesty of justice”.

 

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