Prior to the election in The Gambia, there were thoughts of uncertainty as it marked the first ever election held after the removal of Yahya Jammeh from power. Such thoughts were further amplified by the refusal of the current President, Adama Barrow to respect the terms of the coalition agreement with which he won against Jammeh, creating a very unpredictable political atmosphere.
However, the outcome was totally different. Reports from authorities representing the ECOWAS on its Election Observation Mission (EOM) indicated that, the election which saw the re-election of Adama Barrow was “peacefully” and “transparently” conducted. Ernest Bai Koroma, former President of Sierra Leone and current head of the ECOWAS mission in The Gambia who made these remarks equally praised the simple but effective electoral system implored by the government.
“The Mission is impressed with the simple but effective voting system, based on the use of marbles being dropped in each candidate’s ballot drum thereby preventing spoilt ballots or invalid votes. The Mission is appreciative of the conditions in which the election was organized as well as the speed and transparency in the collation, transmission and declaration of the provisional results by the IEC.” he said.
He congratulated the Gambian government and all the sector players for such show of electoral maturity. “ECOWAS Mission congratulates the government and the people of the Gambia and all stakeholders for their efforts made so far in ensuring that the election was conducted in a peaceful atmosphere,” He said.
His excellency Ernest Bai further added that, “despite the controversies, accusations and counter-accusations and the rejection on early Sunday 5th December 2021, of the results, announced, by three Gambian Presidential Candidates, ECOWAS Mission confirmed that the electoral process has been calm and peaceful with no major incident reported.”