Africa Gambian president’s ex-party wins local elections

Gambian president’s ex-party wins local elections

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President Adama Barrow

The former party of President Adama Barrow, the United Democratic Party, has swept the local government elections, winning 62 of the 120 seats contested for.

The Gambia Democratic Congress Party, led by Mamma Kandeh, a former ally of ex-President Yahya Jammeh, has come second with 23 seats.

The party of the former ruler Jammeh, the Alliance for Patriotic Reorientation and Construction, has surprisingly won only 18 seats. This is a hard fall from their performance in the previous elections, in which they had won all the councilor seats. 

Adama Barrow resigned from the UDP to run as an independent candidate for the coalition that had dethroned the former dictator Yahya Jammeh.

“The election was done fairly and transparently,” said Alieu Momar Njai, the election chairman.

This is the second election after the fall of the former ruler. The UDP had won the majority of the seats in the country’s parliamentary election in April 2016 as well.

Despite the low voter turnout, this year’s election has seen an unprecedented rise in participation with 409 candidates from eight different political parties in addition to the independents.

The council elections is seen as a test for parties ahead of the country’s mayoral elections slated for May 12. 

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