Omar Jallow, leader of the PPP

(JollofNews) – An opposition leader in the Gambia has called on his colleagues in the opposition to form a unity front against President Yahya if they are really serious about defeating him in the December elections.

Omar Amadou Jallow of the opposition People’s Progressive Party (PPP), said opposition parties should realise that no single party can defeat President Jammeh’s ruling APRC on its own in an election with the support of other parties.

“The solution is for the opposition to form a coalition as quickly as possible. It doesn’t matter whether we have all the parties or not. What matters is the majority of the parties to come together,” he told the independent Standard Newspaper.

The Gambia will hold presidential election on 1st December, with legislative and local polls to follow in April 2017 and April 2018.

The small West African nation of less than two million people has been ruled by President Yahya Jammeh since 1994, when the then 29-year-old seized power in a bloodless coup.

Mr Jammeh who is eyeing a fifth term was re-elected in 2011 with 72 per cent of the votes.

Gambia's opposition leaders
Gambia’s opposition leaders

886, 578 Gambians have been registered to vote in the election as opposed to 796, 929 in the last election.

Opposition parties are currently holding discussions about putting up a single candidate against Mr Jammeh but newspaper reports said they are not closed to naming a flag bearer.

Mr Jallow said although his party has got no intentions of putting up a candidate against Mr Jammeh, it will continue to play a crucial role in ensuring that a coalition is formed within the opposition.

He added: “Since the PPP re-emerged in the political arena in 2001, our intention was and still remains to be coming together with our sister opposition parties to remove APRC from power. Because I see no reason why the PPP should start alone, knowing very well that they cannot defeat APRC alone.”

“I personally believe that if the oppositions fail to grab the opportunity that is presented to them this year, they should have themselves to blame for failing the Gambian people. Owing to this fact, I believe we should all galvanise our efforts and forget about our individual interest in favour of national interest, which is to end the APRC regime.”