“My rejection has no legal basis”, Independent Candidate Alhagie Mamadi Kurang reacts

Alhagie Mamadi Kurang

One of the rejected Independent aspirants, Alhagie Mamadi Kurang, has said the verdict of the national electoral commission, IEC, “has no legal basis”.

“The IEC is trying to decide the fate of an election by overriding the will of voters with minor technical issues that have no legal basis.

“Nominations in the Election Act are about candidates, as clearly spelt out, not about party.

“In the next five years, citizens must use our National Assembly to clip the vain dictatorial tendencies of such government bodies, that are prone to using individual interest, under the pretext of applying the law and institutional cover, to deny citizens their rights,” Kurang added.

Meanwhile, the IEC has reportedly dismissed all appeals submitted to it by some of whose nomination papers the electoral commission rejected last week.

Kurang was was one of the 15 aspirants disqualified by the IEC, which over the weekend announced that only six out of the 21 nominees were deemed qualified to participate in the election.

Kurang was among them; and, it is now being reported that his appeal, along with those of Mai Fatty of the Gambia Moral Congress, CA’s Dr Ismaila Ceesay, GAP’s Alieu Sowe, ANRD’s Lamin Bojang, and the independent aspirant, Papa Faal, were all dismissed by the IEC, according to news reaching The Alkamba Times.

The Alkamba Times is yet to learn the reason(s) given by the IEC for dismissing the appeals.

A provision of the Election Act reads: “The decision of a Returning Officer on a nomination paper or any objection may be appealed against in writing presented to the commission within two days of the decision, and the decision of the commission on the appeal shall be final and shall not be called into question in any court of law.”

The law also states that there will be “no renomination” of a candidate or party flag-bearer.

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Mr. Sainey M.K. Marenah is a Prominent Gambian journalist, founding editor The Alkamba Times and formerly head of communications at the Constitutional Review Commission (CRC) and Communications and PR Consultant for The Gambia Pilot Program, under Gamworks. Mr. Marenah served as the Social media Strategist and Editor at Gambia Radio and Television Services. He is also the Banjul Correspondent for Voice of America Radio. Sainey is a human rights and developmental journalist who has carved a strong niche particularly in new media environments in the Gambian media industry. Mr. Marenah began his career as a junior reporter with the Point Newspaper in the Gambia in 2008 and rose through the ranks to become Chief correspondent before moving to The Standard Newspaper also in Banjul as Editorial Assistant and head of News. He is a household name in the Gambia’s media industry having covered some of the most important stories in the former and current government. These include the high profile treason cases including the Trial of Former military chiefs in Banjul in 2009 to 2012. Following his arrest and imprisonment by the former regime of President, Yahya Jammeh in 2014, Marenah moved to Dakar Senegal where he continues to practice Journalism freelancing for various local and international Media organization’s including the BBC, Al-Jazeera, VOA, and ZDF TV in Germany among others. He is the co-Founder of the Banjul Based Media Center for Research and Development; an institution specialized in research and development undertakings. As a journalist and Communication Expert, focused on supporting the Gambia's transitional process, Mr Marenah continues to play a pivotal role in shaping a viable media and communications platform that engages necessary tools and action to increase civic participation and awareness of the needs of transitional governance to strengthen the current move towards democratization. Mr. Marenah has traveled extensively as a professional journalist in both Europe, Africa and United States and attended several local and international media trainings.

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