Gambia president meets opposition over unity talks

president-adama-barrowAdama Barrow, Gambia’s new president, who has ousted the strongman Yahya Jammeh has promised to create an environment that will ensures political pluralism and democracy in his country.

Barrow made the statement on Tuesday as he met with the leaders of the political parties including the dethroned APRC to sign a memorandum of understanding which is meant to ensure friendly co-existence among political players.

The MOU which was registered by the Independent Electoral Commission is intended to create a peaceful and stable political environment underpinned by a transparent and democratic political dispensation.

“The memorandum of understanding aims to give dignity and respect to the office of the President and that of the Political opposition and encourages them to become partners in national construction and development,” Barrow said.

“The MOU encourages government and the political parties to operate within the confines of the Constitution and other laws of the land. It promotes the rights of Political Parties especially the opposition to operate freely and hold the Government to account.”

The cornerstone of the MOU is to encourage dialogue and cooperation between the Political Parties and foster compliance with a Code of Conduct that restricts them from using offensive language, violence, intimidation and undue use of power for political purpose.

The establishment of an interparty committee that is to meet periodically to settle differences and promote development on electoral matters is welcomed by the Coalition Government, Barrow said.

“I wish to assure you that I will do everything within my powers to support this committee whose objective is to ensure that we live in a society where dialogue and cooperation between Political Parties will serve as a key cornerstone in the promotion and consolidation of democracy, rule of law, human rights and good governance in The Gambia,” he added.

The MOU was signed by all political parties except the Gambia Moral Congress that has no representative at the event.

The meeting was chaired by Halifa Sallah.

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