Major voter apathy greeted Gambia’s Legislative elections, with a good chunk of the registered voters nationwide failed to show up to vote on election day. No reason was given for the unprecedented voter apathy, but observers said this was one of the poorly attended polling in Gambia’s legislative elections. The main opposition United Democratic Party (UDP) captured close to 50 percent of the total vote cast, by securing a comfortable lead of 31 seats in the House.

The former ruling APRC party had five (5) seats, while the longtime PDOIS party secured four seats nationwide. Halifa Sallah, Sedia Jatta, Swaibou Touray,  and Ousman Sillah, won their respective seats in Parliament.

The opposition People’s Progressive Party (PPP) captured two seats in Banjul. The three candidates backed by Team Tawahal Banjul: Muhammed Ndow of Banjul Central (PPP), Fatoumatta Njai, (PPP)Banjul South, and Ousman Sillah Banjul North, (PDOIS) have all emerged victorious in the race. 

The main opposition UDP did not win any single seat in Banjul, where the seat of power is situated. The UDP had grossly underperformed in Banjul.   

The opposition Gambian Democratic Congress (GDC) headed by Mama Kandeh won five seats in Parliament. This is the first time that the GDC, had sponsored candidates to take part in legislative elections.

Overall, GDC’s performance has been very impressive. The party won seats in the Niaminas, Jimara, Basse, and elsewhere around the country.

The opposition National Reconciliation Party (NRP) which has formed an alliance with the UDP won five seats, while out of the dozens of independent candidates, only one of them had won his contested seat.

Thursday’s polling had taken a tribal pattern, according to political analysts. The UDP, had won in areas in Mandinkas predominant settlements, while the GDC, won in areas where the Fullani, and wollof tribes are the majority.

The APRC recorded their victories in the Fonis, where former Gambian dictator Yahya Jammeh, had hailed from.

The PDOIS’s success story was largely centered on different races, who voted for the party. This could be attributed to the exemplary leadership exhibited by Halifa Sallah’s during the recent political impasse. Mr. Sallah, was the face of the Transition government at the material time. This has given him exposure both locally and internationally, especially among the electorate. 

President Adama Barrow, is expected to nominate five people to join the House. Out of the five nominated MPS, one will serve as the Speaker of the House.

The APRC, NRP, and the GDC have tied in terms of electoral performance. The Minority Leader of the House is likely going to come from one of the three parties. mentioned above.  

Written By Pa Nderry M’Bai

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