By Bakary Ceesay
The ECOWAS Mission In the Gambia stressed that it is totally against any group or party that seeks to undermine the constitution of The Gambia and by extension any group that seeks to forcefully demand the removal of any constitutionally and democratically elected government, which contravenes the provisions of the ECOWAS 2001 Supplementary Protocol on Democracy and Good Governance.
The ECOWAS Permanent Mission in The Gambia has been monitoring the various protests being held in the country by the 3-Years-JOTNA, 5-Years-JOTAGUL, the APRC and other intended protests by the 3-Years-JOTNA again on 19 January 2020 and the Gambian Victims Centre in Banjul on 23 January 2020.
In a press release signed by Vabah K. Gayflor Special Representative of the President of ECOWAS to The Gambia noted that though these protests have so far been peaceful, but it will not allow any unconstitutional means to undermine democratically elected government.
The ECOWAS mandate requires the Mission to facilitate dialogue and initiatives that will ensure peace, security and stability in the country. The Mission’s engagement with civil society groups, religious groups and other stakeholders in respect of the current developmentshave all been geared towards this direction.
Deliberate misinformation, distortions and falsehoods about the true and otherwise positive overtures by the Mission aimed at sowing seeds of discord between ECOWAS and Gambian stakeholders and other relevant actors, must be ignored.
The ECOWAS Mission will thus not give credence to any group that seeks to be a source of instability. Therefore, any distortions by some actors in respect of previous engagements by ECOWAS must be ignored.
The Mission once again wishes to assure Gambian stakeholders and citizens at large that it will continue to facilitate dialogue, peaceful co-existence and stability and put in the necessary measures to enhance a stable and secure environment for national development.
The Mission therefore remains seized within its mandate to work with the Government of The Gambia, Development Partners, Civil SocietyOrganisations, and other relevant stakeholders to peacefully resolve any issues that have the potential to undermine the peace, security and stability in the country.