By Fatou Dahaba
The European Union have recently issued a press released urging Gambia government to take the lead in building the necessary national consensus around the future direction of democratic transition, with a new constitution at its core.
EU says the reforms are aimed at entrenching democracy, human rights and the rule of law. Over the last months, it observed with growing concern a marked slowdown in the peace of the reform process and in particular noted the recent important setback with the rejection of the new draft constitution. It is key for the 2021 Presidential elections to take place on the basis of a new social contract.
The released further state that the constitutional review process is linked to other pillars of the democratic transition, in particular the transitional justice process with Truth Reconciliation and Reparation Commission (TRRC), as well as the Security Sector Reform (SSR). It therefore remains important to lay the foundations for the follow-up of these processes. Moreover taking forward other significant reforms, such as the revision of the Public Order Law, media and access to information laws prior to the 2021 Presidential elections, requires decisive government action.
The European Union has been at the forefront of support to the democratic transition in the Gambia since 2017.
This press release comes just two weeks after the EU, Germany, United Kingdom and the United States released a press release urging the Gambia’s Parliament to progress the Draft Constitution into the third reading where the provisions could be further considered.