In a statement, the National Human Rights Commission has called on “grieving” political parties to follow due process and procedures to address any electoral issues, following the December 4 presidential election results.
The statement reads: “The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has concluded monitoring of the 2021 Presidential elections covering the electoral cycle from voter registration to the declaration of results. During this period, NHRC focused on human rights aspects including provisions that guarantee the rights of both voters and political candidates.
“Despite some isolated technical challenges observed during the voting such as, missing names on the Voter List, marbles not fitting in ballot drums, multiple voter registration and delay in the opening of polls, the laid down procedures were generally followed by the electoral officials.
“Overall, Gambians exercised their constitutional right and turned out in large numbers to participate in the election. This is a manifestation of our growing democracy and the people’s full exercise of their right to participate in public affairs and have a say in who governs them.
“We take this opportunity to thank the electorate and presidential candidates for a peaceful election, the IEC for conducting the elections as per the laid down rules, and the Gambia Police Force for maintaining peace and security throughout the election process. We further commend the IEC for giving priority consideration to Persons with Disability (PWDs), pregnant and nursing mothers and the elderly who came out to vote.
“We urge all political parties and/or presidential candidates to follow due process and procedures to address any electoral grievances in line with the Constitution and other Laws of the Gambia. We exhort all supporters to maintain the peace and be law abiding. It is only in an environment of peace in which we follow the rule of law and due process would we acieve our national aspirations.
“As a State organ, mandated to protect and promote human rights, the Commission would continue to promote and protect the fundamental human rights of all people in the Gambia and nurture the culture of respect for human rights in the country.”