(JollofNews) – Gambia’s opposition coalition has vowed to go ahead with plans to inaugurate Adama Barrow as president of the Gambia on January 19th.
Mai Ahmad Fatty, a senior member of the opposition coalition, said they are determined to swear-in the president-elect and no power on earth shall either defer or prevent the event from taking place.
“January 19, 2017, the Gambia shall swear-in our new president, H.E Adama Barrow,” Mr Fatty, wrote on Facebook page.
“Inshaa’Allah, [Allah willing] no power on earth shall either defer or prevent that.”
Mr Barrow, 51, was declared winner of last month’s presidential election by the country’s electoral commission. The results were however
unilaterally annulled by President Yahya Jammeh, who is calling for fresh elections.
Mr Jammeh, 51, who has ruled the Gambia since July 1994 had initially conceded defeat and praised the country’s electoral system as “the most transparent election in the whole world,” adding that he would not contest the result.
He later changed his mind and filed a lawsuit at the supreme court asking it to declare him winner of the elections.
In the petition, Mr Jammeh said he had pulled more votes in the election than his opposition rival and has asked the court to declared him the duly elected president of the Gambia instead of Adama Barrow.
The case is due to be heard on 10th January 2017 but the opposition said it will go ahead with the inauguration irrespective of the court’s verdict.
Mr Fatty said the Gambian people have rejected Mr Jammeh in a free and fair election and the opposition will use this opportunity to usher the Gambia into a new era of prosperity.
“Go about your normal business, prepare for joyous national celebration, with steel determination to defend your democracy. Together, we shall rebuild The Gambia. Happy New Year to all citizens and friends of New Gambia,” he added.
Meanwhile, President Jammeh has criticised Wednesday’s the decision by Ecowas leaders to authorised a so-called Ecowas Standby Force (ESF) to intervene militarily in the Gambia and enforce the outcome of the election results if he refuses to give up power when his mandate expires on January 18.
He said the decision is ‘absolutely unacceptable’ and a declaration of war and an insult to Constitution of the Gambia.
“This blatant and one-sided dimensional approach that the role of Ecowas is not predicated on the pursuit of justice in the resolution of this stalemate,” he said.
“Without this quest for justice within the context of the constitution of the Gambia and the elimination of the threat of use of force in the position of Ecowas, the impasse will continue with the risk of escalation into a military confrontation.
“We have been principled, vehemently condemned violence but we shall never condone injustice and we will also not be threatened. Our sovereignty will not be compromised. Let me make very clear, we are ready to defend this country against any aggression and there will be no compromise for that. My government will Inshallah [Allah willing] never opt for such confrontation unless when we are compelled to defend our sovereignty, independence and dignity.”