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Draft constitution recommends only elected NAMs

Nov 18, 2019, 2:53 PM | Article By: Momodou Jawo

The Constitutional Review Commission (CRC) last Friday released the much anticipated draft constitution. The draft recommends for only elected National Assembly Members and not nominated ones.

The draft constitution spelled a need for 53 elected from single member constituencies; 14 elected women, two from each Administrative Area; and two persons, elected by persons with disabilities from amongst the members of the federation representing such persons in future.

It says there is no residency requirement to be eligible for National Assembly election, although a candidate must satisfy the other qualifications outlined in the constitution.

The method for initiating a recall of an elected member of the National Assembly, Justice Cherno Sulayman Jallow, the chairman of the commission said, is provided for, considering the increased size of the National Assembly, provision is made to enable the Assembly to elect two deputy speakers.

The positions of Majority Leader and Minority Leader of the National Assembly, Justice Jallow added, are established. “The business of the National Assembly is to be conducted in the English language or in any other language indigenous to The Gambia, and the Assembly is required to encourage and facilitate the progressive realisation of the use of languages indigenous to The Gambia in the conduct of the business of the Assembly within five years of the coming into force of the draft constitution.”

“Provision is made to enable members of the public to petition the National Assembly on any matter within the authority of the Assembly; and (h) The National Assembly Service Commission is established to deal with staff matters relative to the Assembly.”

According to Justice Jallow, in respect of the judiciary, the following new provisions have been created: “A provision is made outlining the principles of justice”

“The Chief Justice and all other judges of the superior courts must be Gambians; however, provision is made allowing for the recruitment and appointment of non-Gambians in circumstances where a sufficient number of Gambians are not available for appointment to a particular judicial office.”

The Supreme Court, he stated, is given supervisory jurisdiction over all other superior courts, while the High Court and Shari’ah High Court have such jurisdiction over the subordinate courts under them.

“The Shari’ah High Court is established, with jurisdiction to hear and determine Shari’ah causes or matters relating to adoption, marriage, divorce, burial, inheritance, or endowment (waqf); the Cadi Courts are to be transformed into Shari’ah Courts.”

In view of the restrictions placed on a judge who has retired from office, he noted, provision is made for benefits, provided the judge has served for a specified number of years. “The composition of the Judicial Service Commission has been streamlined to make the institution more democratic.”

‘The Islamic  Solution to  World Peace’

Assalamo Alaikum Wa Rahmatullah Wa Barakatuhu


On Saturday, 19th October 2019, the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at, the Gambia, hosted the 2nd Peace Conference Africa at The Kairaba Beach Hotel. This was the second of its kind, the first having been held in Ghana in 2018.

The theme for this year’s peace conference was ‘The Islamic Solution to World Peace’.     Mr. Karim Asad Ahmad Khan QC, Assistant Secretary General of the United Nations, was the Keynote Speaker for the Conference.

Mr. Khan Quoted extensively from the Holy Qur’an, the Ahadith of the Holy Prophet Muhammad of Islam (Peace and blessings be upon him), the writings of the Promised Messiah and Imam Mahdi (AS) and his successors. He spoke of the Qur’anic teaching of equality of human beings citing Ch. 49 verse 14 which talks of the creation of tribes and subtribes but then says that we are all equal and the most honourable in the sight of Allah is the one who is high righteousness.

He quoted the sayings of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (SAW), especially the Farewell Sermon which spoke of the equality of men regardless of race, tribe, gender or nationality. He said that had the world followed the instructions of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (SAW), we would have been rid of wars and strife.

He spoke of the current Spiritual and Supreme head of Worldwide Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih V Mirza Masroor Ahmad(May Allah be his Helper) who delivers speeches and lectures in various parts of the world on the subject of peace. He said the Khalifa continuously calls for the promotion of justice in international relations saying that it is the only way to attain world peace.

The Amir of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at, The Gambia, Mr. Baba F. Trawally called for peace and unity in the world. He called on all and sundry to promote a peaceful and harmonious coexistence knowing that it is only in peace that there can be development.

He highlighted the Ahmadiyya Muslims Jamaat’s role in the drive to promote world peace and justice stating that the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at’s global drive to spread the message of Peace is not something new and we are grateful to Allah Almighty to say that our beloved and supreme head His Holiness Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad is Championing the Global Drive for the attainment of not just world peace but for the realisation of the observance of the rights of each individual and also for global justice.

The Honourable Minister of Information and Communication Infrastructure, Mr. Ebrima Sillah delivered a message on behalf of the President of the Republic of the Gambia, His Excellency Mr. Adama Barrow. He reiterated Government’s stance on promoting peace and progress through good governance. He registered the Government’s acknowledgement and appreciation of the efforts of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at in the areas of education, health and agriculture. He assured the participants of the Gambia Governments readiness to continue working with the Jama’at in the interest of the peace and progress of the Gambia.

The Chairman of the Constitutional Review Commission (CRC) Justice Cherno Sulayman Jallow also spoke on the need to be united and work together to chart a course for the progress of the country. He spoke of ways and means to eradicate social injustices which are mostly the cause for conflicts in the world.

The Lord Rt. Rev. James Allen Yaw Odico, Bishop of the Anglican Church of the Gambia, Senegal and Cape Verde also spoke at the event calling for interreligious dialogue in the world. He quoted from the Bible to show how all mankind should love one another to attain peace.

The Imam Ratib of the Kanifing Mosque, Imam Baba Leigh who is also a commissioner in the National Human Rights Commission of the Gambia also spoke at length on the teachings of the Holy Qur’an on the equality of mankind in the sight of Allah. He called on everyone to be tolerant and accommodate divergent views. He said each should respect the views of others for us to live in peace and harmony.


This year’s Africa Peace Prize winner was Dr. Evan Atar Adaha of Sudan. Dr. Atar, 52, is the senior and only surgeon at Maban Referral Hospital, a 120-bed and two-theatre facility in Bunj, in the south-eastern corner of South Sudan’s Upper Nile State. The hospital, more than 600 kilometres from the capital, Juba, is the only functioning surgical facility in Upper Nile and includes a neonatal section and a 20-bed tuberculosis ward. Open 24 hours a day, it serves a population of more than 200,000. Dr. Atar is so well known that many just refer to it as “Dr. Atar’s Hospital”, and patients travel for days so they can be under his care.

A Christian by faith, Dr. Atar, who is fluent in the region’s main language, Arabic, prays with patients before they are put under anaesthetic and, according to their religion, recites the Bible or the Koran. Dr Evan Atar Adaha is dedicated to bringing health care to the neediest in a tense and volatile region of South Sudan. It is with this dedication to serve the people that he has been chosen as the winner of the 2nd Africa Peace Prize 2019.

The Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at wishes to express heartfelt thanks and appreciation to all those who took part in the organization of the conference. It also wishes to thank all the participants.

May Allah, the Almighty grant the world peace and stability. May He bless us all with His Choicest blessings and grant peace and progress to the Gambia and world at large. Ameen.


Yours Sincerely


Baba F. Trawally