by Alhagie Jobe
President-elect Adama Barrow has confirmed that his inauguration as the President of the Republic should take Place in the third week of January 2017.
Barrow made this declaration in his first statement to the nation issued on Friday, a week after been declared winner of the 2016 Presidential election against incumbent President Yahya Jammeh who had rule the country for 22 years.
According to him, people are wondering why he has not assumed office on Friday 2nd December 2016 but said the answer is simple.
“I was declared a winner of the Presidential Election based on the letter and spirit of 1997 Constitution and the Electoral laws of the Gambia. The incumbent respected the results and promised to work with me to have a smooth transfer of power based on the Constitution of the Republic” he said.
Section 63 subsection (2) of that Constitution clearly states that:
“(2) The person declared elected as President shall take the prescribed oaths and assume office on the day the term of office of the incumbent President expires.”
He said that is the law and after broad consultations with Coalition stakeholders and legal experts, it is now conclusive that he should assume office on the day the term of office of President Jammeh expires, meaning his inauguration as the President of the Republic should take Place in the third week of January 2017.
He said the transition team is now working on the modalities of the swearing in ceremony and would communicate all developments on the transition to the public, as and when it is necessary for the sake of accountability and transparency.
According to him, Gambians and Gambia can raise their heads and count themselves among the most democratic nations in the world. He said the congratulatory message from outgoing President Yahya Jammeh and his promise to work with the incoming government to ensure a smooth transfer of power is another milestone in the history of democratic transfer of power in Africa.
“We have agreed to set up parallel teams, on both sides, to work hand in hand to formulate and implement the modalities of the transition. My team as an incoming President has been constituted. It comprises Gambians of integrity and competence who are now charged with the responsibility of formulating a road map for the transition. They have presented the transitional agenda of the incoming administration which has been approved by me and the Coalition stakeholders as a realistic, practical and time bound programme of activities to ensure peaceful transfer of power” he concluded.