By Alagie Manneh
The leader of the opposition Gambia Democratic Congress, Mamma Kandeh has reacted to the Supreme Court’s rejection of the election petition filed by fellow opposition United Democratic Party.
Dissatisfied with the election results, the UDP filed a petition at the courts, however, the Supreme court struck out the case, stating that the party failed to comply with rule 11 of the Elections Petition Rules.
But Kandeh disagreed, arguing that what actually transpired was a disregard of the rule of law.
“The 2021 election has been held, [but] laws have been damaged, and they say that we should empower them in damaging those laws,” Kandeh said at a political event.
What Gambians need to know, he said, “is that they have been denied their rights. Some 800,000 people voted – unprecedented. It never happened before. More than half of all those voters said they disagree [with the results], but no one wants to listen to them. They brought Rule 11 and said that the UDP lawyers did not give notice to Adama Barrow that he has been petitioned. But it was the Supreme Court itself that said the UDP must pay D300,000 and they paid that and Adama Barrow’s lawyers wrote complaining that Adama Barrow must never be taken to court because he is a sitting president. Now, if Adama Barrow wasn’t aware, or noticed, how did his lawyers know about it and even went to the courthouse? Again, UDP took their papers on a Tuesday, and on Thursday they were called to the courthouse, but lawyers came from Adama Barrow to the courthouse and claimed they were not aware of the case. They claimed that the petition filed by the UDP fell out of the ten-day period given for challenging the election results. That’s why I said that it’s only five sons of The Gambia who conspired to deny more than 400,000 citizens of this country their right. The technicality is a process, a process on how to go about the case, but the case itself was never heard. More than 2,000 pages of documents were brought forward by the UDP, detailing [electoral fraud],” Kandeh told his audience.