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GAMBIA: UNLESS THE DRAFT CONSTITUTION IS PRESENTED FOR READING BY NOVEMBER, COPG WILL STAGE A PEACEFUL PROTEST

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Following the recent pronouncement by the President Adama Barrow during the State of the Nation address for a referendum in December, the CoPG is yet to be convinced that there is going to be a referendum in December. It must be noted that this is not the first time the President is making such a pronouncement. Our concern is not only a delay for a referendum but the amendment or changes that may be made in some of the provisions that is not in favor of the ruling party and also the commitment by the ruling party to support the original form of the constitution which all stakeholders are calling for. It’s evidently clear that if certain provisions or clauses are tampered most of the stakeholders will reject it. So it’s important to note that the passing of the 2020 Draft Constitution is entirely dependent on the ruling party and government.


We have notably seen the presentation and passing of Bills backed by certificates of urgency for the sole purpose of financial gains and advantages of a few within short notice. An urgency certificate backed the retirement benefits of the President, now the benefits for the Judicial Officers and National Assembly Salaries and Pensions Bill which have no relevance to the expectations of Gambians. When Gambians are calling for a total system change for credible democratic dispensations and good governance, those entrusted to execute our expectations are busy with self perpetuating interests which have extremely adverse economic or financial repercussions on the lives of the taxpayers.


The Coalition of Progressive Gambians is reminding government through the Ministry of Justice and the National Assembly Members to uphold their responsibilities of serving the interest of those who are responsible for paying their previledges and livelihood. The world and particularly Africa is fast changing and certainly in the age of information technology, ignorance is a choice. The realities are, people are aware and awakened. We therefore call on government through the Ministry of Justice to present the 2020 Draft Constitution with a Certificate of Urgency as with other Bills to the National Assembly for reading and also urge the National Assembly Members to do their utmost to support and ensure a date for a referendum is proposed soon. We want to remind all those responsible that, it’s wise to let the hungry sleeping dogs sleep. Let Justice guide our actions for the good of all.

For the Coalition of Progressive Gambians. I am,

Celestine Kujabi,

Secretary General.

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