20 May 2019

Gambia: The Role of Civil Society in a Changing Political Environment


All agree in common that power belongs to the people. How that power is to be exercised is what is still not clear to many. This is why different forces are calling for diverse approaches in addressing the current political situation in the country.

Suffice it to say, wherever there is divergence in matters of organisation there is bound to be weakness. Hence awareness is a tool that enables the people to realise their power. Take the issue of three years and five years that is a burning topic. No one would disagree that according to section 63 of the Constitution, a presidential term of five years is established. Hence no elected president could serve for more than five years.

However, under section 65 of the Constitution, the office of President could become vacant on the death or resignation of the President or in case of physical or mental capacity inability or misconduct.

Hence a president could also leave office before five years. Hence staying for four years or leaving after three years are all possible under the Constitution.

The question now arises: Should Barrow serve for five years or three years. It is President Barrow who should decide. The future will tell.


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