Monday, April 19, 2021

Fifty-fifth independence anniversary without a third republic

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On the 18th February 2020 the government and people commemorated the 55th anniversary of the declaration of independence. The 52nd anniversary marked the first year of the change of 2nd December 2016. This change was envisaged to bring about a third republic by the 55th anniversary of the declaration of independence. Unfortunately, the constitution that should bring about the third republic and the referendum that should usher it are still not in place.

The president addressed the nation but did not mention when the third republic will be the subject matter for national discourse. The draft constitution has been widely debated but there is silence on when a referendum will be held to come to a final decision whether Gambians will create a third republic by voting ‘yes’ or remain in the second republic by voting ‘no’.

The president and the people at large should note that the coming into being of a third republic is linked to the promulgation of a constitution through a referendum involving 50 percent of the registered voters, seventy-five percent of whom must cast a yes vote before new republic is born. 2021 is next door. 2020 is the decisive year if we are to move from the second republic to the third.

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