Gambia rejoins Commonwealth

Gambia rejoins Commonwealth

The Gambia has been readmitted to the Commonwealth on Thursday following the democratic election of President Adama Barrow, who reversed the shock pullout of 2013.

His predecessor Yahya Jammeh suddenly withdrew the impoverished west African nation in October that year, branding the group an “extension of colonialism” as he lashed out at international organisations.

Accused of flagrant rights abuses, Jammeh ruled mainland Africa’s smallest country with an aura of mysticism and an iron fist after seizing power in 1994.

Barrow began the readmission process in February last year, two months after topping an election in which Jammeh initially refused to give up his 22-year rule, triggering a crisis.

Barrow’s formal application to rejoin the Commonwealth, submitted last month, received unanimous support from member states.

Setting the seal on its return Thursday, The Gambia’s flag was raised in a ceremony at Marlborough House, the Commonwealth Secretariat’s headquarters in London.

“The government and people of The Gambia are ecstatic and overjoyed,” said Francis Blain, the country’s representative in London, as he hoisted the flag.

 Under Barrow, “democracy, good governance, rule of law, respect for human rights and the independence of the judiciary have been fully restored,” he said.

“Every effort will be made by the government to ensure that functioning of democratic processes in The Gambia are scrupulously maintained.”

AFP

Nigerian Online Newspaper=


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