May 9, 2012, 3:31 PM
The Chairperson of the African Union (AU) Commission Dr. Jean Ping is deploying an election observation mission to The Gambia to supervise the parliamentary elections scheduled to be held on the 29th of March 2012.
The observation mission led by Dr. Fonkam Samuel Azuu is expected to make an independent and impartial observation of the electoral process in The Gambia.
The AU mission expected to be deployed across the country includes personalities representing the AU Member States, the AU Commission, officials of national electoral bodies and members of the African Civil Society.
The AU has been duly invited by the Gambian Government to deploy an election observer mission for the parliamentary elections in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Durban Declaration of July 2002 on the principles regulating democratic elections in Africa.
The parliamentary elections come five months after the presidential elections, which saw incumbent Yahya Jammeh re-elected with a landslide victory of 72 percent.
The Gambian parliament has a membership of 53, 49 of whom are elected at the district levels while the president nominates the remaining four, two of whom are to serve as speaker and deputy speaker respectively.