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What are we heading for?

Jan 16, 2017, 11:03 AM

Our situation in The Gambia is getting more and more heated, as parties to the political impasse are apparently moving poles apart.

Since the results of the December 1 presidential elections in The Gambia were rejected by the outgoing president, parties directly involving in the matter have remained adamant in their positions, as an amicable solution to the impasse is sought.

Whilst the camp of the president-elect has been calling on the outgoing president and his government to prepare the ground, during this transitional period, to hand over to them, the sitting president’s position has remained the same: “I am not stepping down.”

Whilst this has been the position of the sitting president, the president-elect has also maintained that, come 19 January 2017, he would be inaugurated to start work with his administration.

This has also been the position of heads of state of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), and even the African Union and the United Nations, supported by many other bodies and institutions in the country and abroad.

“The Authority [of Ecowas heads of state] shall take all necessary actions to enforce the results of 1st December 2016 election,” West African leaders said in a communiqué issued at the end of the 50th ordinary session of the heads of state of ECOWAS held on Saturday 17 December 2016.

“President-elect Adama Barrow must be sworn in on 19 January 2017,” they said.

This has been their stance as they invited President-elect Adama Barrow to the France-Africa summit just held in Mali.

This situation has sparked serious anxiety, and made the fate of the nation hangs in the balance, and we are really uncertain of where we are heading.

Would the sitting president hand over power by 19 January 2017? What will Adama Barrow do if power is not given to him by 19 January?

And what actions will be taken by the ECOWAS and the international community against the siting president and his government, if he fails to hand over power to the democratically-elected president of the Gambian people?

As it is, we can only see more questions than answers. And we, therefore, ask: What are we heading for?

Is it for an amicable solution or for something else?

“Determine the thing that can and shall be done, and then we shall find the way.”

Abraham Lincoln