Statement by the ACP Group on the Political Situation in The Gambia
The African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of States continues to monitor closely the unsettling political developments in The Gambia, following the successfully conducted elections of December 1, the graceful concession of defeat by President JAMMEH on December 2, and the latter’s subsequent reversal of that decision on December 9. The ACP Group joins the international community in condemning the decision by outgoing President JAMMEH to subsequently contest the results of the elections, which had been declared free, fair and transparent by the Independent Electoral Commission, and which threatens the peace and harmony for which The Gambia is renowned. Various strata of the Gambian society have unanimously condemned this volte-face – the lawyers, business community, students, youth groups, musicians, doctors, Gambians abroad, serving Gambian Ambassadors, religious leaders, lecturers and teachers, local and international NGOs, etc.
It is also worth noting that the elections were hailed as free, fair, and transparent by both local and international observers, including the African Union and the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation.
The ACP Group therefore urges outgoing President JAMMEH to unconditionally accept the will of the Gambian people, as clearly expressed in the election results of December 1, for which the Independent Electoral Commission declared President-elect Adama BARROW as the winner. The ACP Group of States aligns itself with the statements issued by the UN Security Council, ECOWAS, AU, and OIC, and strongly urges outgoing President JAMMEH to ensure the smooth and peaceful transfer of power to President-elect Adama BARROW by January 19th 2017.
Brussels, 20 December 2016