Saturday, May 28, 2022

DIASPORA VOTING IN LIMBO

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2016 was welcomed by the Diaspora as the triumph of their struggle to be heard, seen and present in determining political outcome in The Gambia. Most people in the Diaspora expected timely constitutional changes that will enable them to vote and hold public office in The Gambia whenever duty calls them to do so.

Interestingly enough electoral reform is taking place without constitutional reform. The National Assembly of The Gambia is currently considering the Elections Bill.

In all fairness such a Bill should be suspended since a presidential election has already taken place and it will be unfair for any election to take place under this law.

The focus should now be constitutional reform. The key question of diaspora voting, term limit, the absolute majority principle for presidential elections, the strengthening of parliamentary oversight of appointment and removal of ministers should be debated and given consideration in a constitutional review exercise.

What is of utmost urgency for President Barrow to consider after his inauguration is constitutional reform. Will he put it at the top of his agenda The future will tell.

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