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City of Banjul
Tuesday, September 22, 2020

OJ calls on IEC to revive interparty committee

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The former agriculture minister-cum opposition postulated that the opposition and government are partners in development, calling for  better relationship between them.

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OJ added: “In any civilised democracy, the opposition and the ruling party must not see each other as enemies. We are even better committed than some people in the government to make sure that we promote peace in this country.”

Speaking during a news conference held at his Pipeline residence, he warned that the opposition may consider petitioning the executive to conduct a reform of the country’s electoral laws ahead of the 2016 elections. He described the electoral laws as ‘unfavourable’ for the conduct of free and fair multi-party elections.

He maintained: “What I am saying is that we may want to petition the government to change the electoral laws and also we may, if the government insist, invoke the clause in the constitution that makes it difficult or even impossible to hold demonstrations. We [opposition] are in the process of discussing this.We have to cease to be opposition who only organise meetings and rallies. We should be involved in every decision and challenge every process of governance to make sure that the government of the day respects every aspect of the laws of the land and we have so many peaceful ways to do this. We as opposition parties can petition the government to address some of these flaws in the electoral laws. We have a right to invoke those provisions of the constitution and take to the street with our people and show the Gambia government that we, as Gambians, are not going to negotiate nor beg for our rights but demand for them – this is democracy and it is going to be peaceful. This is a better option to the barrel of a gun, which does not often yield the desired outcome, as we have seen in many countries already. It is high time we started to demand for our rights.”

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