Presidential elections were held in Gambia on 1 December, 2016. The incumbent, Yahya Jammeh, appeared confident of securing a fifth term in office. An army Lieutenant who became President of the Gambia after ceasing power in a bloodless coup d’état on 22 July 1994, President Jammeh was a quintessential African President-for-life. Behind a façade of regular presidential and parliamentary elections, President Jammeh maintained control of Gambia through the tried-and-tested techniques of authoritarianism. Intimidation of political opponents, harassment of journalists, pay-offs to loyalists, electoral fraud and gerrymandering, and the control of civil society by an overbearing security apparatus ensured Yahya Jammeh’s continued grip on power.
The 2016 election was supposed to be no different. Dissidents and opposition leaders were threatened, and at times imprisoned and tortured, and the State media actively campaigned for President Jammeh. This led observers to dismiss the possibility that the election would be free and fair. Citing these irregularities, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) announced that it would not participate in observing the election, while the European Union was denied entry to the country, despite having had initial indications that it would be allowed to monitor the election. This left a small contingent of African Union (AU) observers as the only foreign actor overseeing the election.
AfroAsia, R (2021). ECOWAS INTERVENTION AND DEMOCRATIZATION IN WEST AFRICAN SUB-REGION (A Study of Gambia 2016 General Election). Afribary.com: Retrieved April 14, 2021, from https://afribary.com/works/ecowas-intervention-and-democratization-in-west-african-sub-region-a-study-of-gambia-2016-general-election
Research, AfroAsia. "ECOWAS INTERVENTION AND DEMOCRATIZATION IN WEST AFRICAN SUB-REGION (A Study of Gambia 2016 General Election)" Afribary.com. Afribary.com, 02 Apr. 2021, https://afribary.com/works/ecowas-intervention-and-democratization-in-west-african-sub-region-a-study-of-gambia-2016-general-election . Accessed 14 Apr. 2021.
Research, AfroAsia. "ECOWAS INTERVENTION AND DEMOCRATIZATION IN WEST AFRICAN SUB-REGION (A Study of Gambia 2016 General Election)". Afribary.com, Afribary.com, 02 Apr. 2021. Web. 14 Apr. 2021. < https://afribary.com/works/ecowas-intervention-and-democratization-in-west-african-sub-region-a-study-of-gambia-2016-general-election >.
Research, AfroAsia. "ECOWAS INTERVENTION AND DEMOCRATIZATION IN WEST AFRICAN SUB-REGION (A Study of Gambia 2016 General Election)" Afribary.com (2021). Accessed April 14, 2021. https://afribary.com/works/ecowas-intervention-and-democratization-in-west-african-sub-region-a-study-of-gambia-2016-general-election