The political situation in the Republic of The Gambia is marked by the arrest, detention and death of some opposition leaders following demonstrations advocating political reforms prior to the presidential election scheduled to hold in December 2016.
ECOWAS reiterates that the consolidation of peace and stability in the Republic of The Gambia can only result from a consensual, inclusive and nationally-owned process and respect for constitutional order.
ECOWAS therefore calls on the political stakeholders including opposition members and civil society organizations to display a profound sense of civic responsibility and patriotism in the exercise of their civil rights to peaceful assembly.
ECOWAS further calls on the government of the Republic of The Gambia to ensure the freedom of expression and strict adherence to the rule of law and the principles of human rights. The Commission further appeals to the Gambian security forces to put up a republican comportment and refrain from the use of any form of excessive force while maintaining law and order.
The ECOWAS Commission extends its deep condolences to the families of the deceased persons and calls on the government of the Republic of The Gambia to shed light on the circumstances that led to the recent unfortunate event.
The ECOWAS Commission will continue monitoring the situation, and expresses its readiness to support the Authorities and citizens of the Republic of The Gambia for a peaceful resolution of the crisis.
Done at Abuja, this 19th Day of April 2016