Learning Lessons from the Results of the Gambian Elections

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Bakary Sonko

By: Bakary Sonko

Over the past six months, The Gambia has undergone multiple voting cycles, bringing new developments and outcomes. The first cycle saw the incumbent President and the national people’s Party secure a comfortable win in the presidential election. However, subsequent voting cycles have seen the balance of power shift unexpectedly. The national people’s Party secured the most seats in the national assembly election. However, they fell short of the two-thirds majority they hoped to achieve. This result set the stage for further political developments as the ruling Party and the opposition began strategizing for the upcoming councillorship election.

 

 

In the councillorship election, the main opposition party secured a majority of the seats in urban areas and won the overall popular vote nationally. This was a significant upset for the ruling Party and marked a turning point in the political landscape of The Gambia. However, the mayoral and chairperson elections have recently seen the main opposition party continue its upward trajectory, winning most seats and popular votes. This article will explore the various factors contributing to this trend, including shifting voter demographics, changing political alliances, and evolving campaign strategies. By examining these factors, we can better understand the complex political landscape of The Gambia and the forces shaping its future.

  1. NPP SHOOTING ITSELF IN THE FOOT.

One of the primary factors contributing to the shift in political power is the infighting and betrayals within the national people’s Party. The Party is plagued by several politicians who have been given unchecked power despite their inability to win support in their local communities. This has led to a situation where the Party has alienated some of its core supporters and has even expelled members who could sway votes in their favor. In addition, the different factions within the Party have competing agendas, often based on regional or ethnic loyalties, which further exacerbates the problem.

Another major issue is the behavior of the Party’s leader, who serves as the country’s President. In recent years, his rhetoric and public statements have been increasingly unbecoming of a head of state. He has launched personal attacks on those who disagree with him, and his responses to trivial issues have further eroded his standing among the people. The Party’s history is also marked by a tendency to discard those who have fought for them in the past in favor of new political allies who do not necessarily add value to the Party or the national development agenda.

  1. UPD’S RESILIENCE AND THEIR APPEALING CANDIDATE

The United Democratic Party is undoubtedly the most prominent political Party in the country, with a strong national presence. In the last six years, the Party has achieved remarkable progress, surpassing its achievements over the past two decades since its formation. The exceptional leadership of the Party and the unwavering support of its core supporters have played significant roles in this success.

 

One of the reasons for the Party’s success is its careful selection of candidates. The Party has ensured that it fields popular candidates in most areas. They put forward well-known people by their constituents and run well-planned campaigns that leverage different media, especially social media, to reach the people. The Party’s strategic use of social media has been particularly effective in mobilizing and energizing its supporters, contributing significantly to its electoral success.

 

The United Democratic Party’s achievements over the past six years are a testament to the effectiveness of its leadership, its commitment to the welfare of the people, and its ability to engage with its supporters. With its impressive track record and loyal following, the Party is poised to continue to make significant gains and contribute to the country’s development.

 

  1. GAMBIAN YOUTHS AND THEIR ACTIVE PARTICIPATION IN POLITICS

One of the most remarkable changes in recent times has been the increase in youth voter turnout during elections. This is a significant shift from when young people were often apathetic towards political participation. The fact that more young people are now taking the initiative to vote is a positive sign for the future of the country’s political landscape.

The rise of youth participation in politics can be attributed to several factors. One of the most significant factors is the increasing awareness and engagement of young people in social and political issues. In addition, with the advent of social media platforms, young people are now better informed and more connected than ever before, which has enabled them to be more involved in the political process.

Another factor contributing to the rise of youth participation in politics is the changing attitudes of political parties towards young people. Many political parties have recognized the importance of young people in shaping the country’s future and have made efforts to attract and engage them in the political process. This has resulted in more young people occupying leadership positions in political parties and running for political offices.

 

ADVISE TO THE PRESIDENT

The President of any country is a symbol of unity and national pride. As such, every word the President speaks should embody wisdom and prioritize the nation’s greater good. The President needs to reduce unnecessary rhetoric and avoid engaging in petty disputes with others over trivial issues. Instead, the President must focus on the bigger picture and work towards achieving national goals.

To achieve this, the President needs to put his house in order. This means eliminating politicians who do not add value to his political ambitions and the national interest. The President should surround himself with competent, trustworthy advisors genuinely interested in his success and the nation’s progress.

It is also time for the President to reach out to his political opponents and work with them for the nation’s greater good. This would require the President to put aside personal or political differences and focus on what is best for the country. The President should seek out and work with competent individuals who can help drive the nation forward.

In addition to working with his political opponents, the President should prioritize the nation’s development. This means investing in infrastructure, education, healthcare, and other essential sectors. The President must also create a conducive environment for businesses to thrive, ultimately leading to job creation and economic growth.

WRITTEN BY

BAKARY S SONKO

STUDENT

TVER STATE UNIVERSITY- Russian Federation  (Bsc International Relations and Diplomacy)

NATIONAL RESEARCH UNIVERSITY; HIGHER SCHOOL OF ECONOMICS -Russian Federation ( Masters in International Management)

Email: bsonko64@gmail.com

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