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Monday, June 14, 2021

Senegalese politicians, others told to keep away from Gambian politics

By Amadou Jadama

Politician-cum-lawyer Assan Martin, has called on foreign elements to desist from interfering in Gambian politics and trying to influence the presidential election in December.

Over the weekend, the leadership of the pro-Macky Sall ANC party from Senegal was in The Gambia and signed a partnership agreement with the PPP. The ANC and the PPP leaders announced they will collaborate to help President Barrow win the December polls.

But Martin, an ardent critic of the Gambian president said it was imprudent for foreign politicians and others to try to interfere in Gambian politics, especially elections.

He advised foreign missions in the country to warn their citizens to stay away from meddling in The Gambia’s electoral process.

“It is important that all ambassadors and representatives of other countries in The Gambia warn their citizens to make sure that they stay away from our election process. We are seeing certain countries trying to influence our election process. We are warning them particularly some of these elements that are coming specifically from Senegalese parties.

“Let them know that, we do not try to influence their elections, so they should not come and try to influence our elections. Recently, we have seen Senegalese parties trying to seal partnerships with parties here. That is uncalled for. We can be friends, but that does not mean they can participate in our electoral process and issue statements saying that they are going to help President Barrow and make sure he gets victory in the coming elections. That is unacceptable. No Gambian would dare do such a thing in Senegal or anywhere else.  So equally, we don’t expect any other foreign country or political party or politician to come and participate in our elections,” he warned.

Mr Martin urged all Gambians to be alert and prevent non-Gambians from getting voter’s cards.

“We are not going to allow non-Gambians to register and to vote. We are receiving complaints about foreign elements that are trying to get voter’s cards. Anybody who is caught trying to get our voter’s card, will be prosecuted and the law will take its course.

“It is a crime for non-Gambians to participate in our elections. The law says only Gambians can. We will not compromise on this and all the parties should take note of this. We want a process that will be free, fair and transparent,” Mr Martin asserted.

He urged alkalolu and seyfolu to vet and ascertain before issuing attestation to anyone.

He ended by calling on opposition parties in the country to form “a formidable alliance to get rid of” President Barrow in the upcoming election. That, he opined, will be the beginning of finding a solution to the problems besetting the country.

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