Over 600,000 registered voters in The Gambia – IEC’s Sambujang Njie
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
The Gambia, with a population of 1, 500 000, has a population of registered voters of 670,336, as at the 2006 presidential election.
This was disclosed by the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC)’s director of Operations, Sambujang Njie, while he was giving a lecture on the country’s political and electoral process at the ongoing training of stakeholders on election administration, at the Kairaba Beach Hotel. There were a total of 989 polling stations and 114 wards, Njie said, adding that Banjul has 9 wards, Kanifing Municipal Council 12, Basse 14 and Janjanbureh 22.
The IEC Operations director further indicated that the requirement for one to contest for the presidency as at now is to be a senior secondary school graduate, within the age limit of 30-65, and to have an English language proficiency with a minimum age of 21 to contest for National Assembly and local government elections.
Presidential aspirants, Sambujang Njie went on, are supposed to deposit D10,000, while National Assembly aspirants deposit D5,000. For Council elections, the deposit is D1,250. Contestants for the position of mayor deposit D2,500. Winning candidates are automatically refunded their deposits, while losing candidates need to have a particular percentage of the total votes cast to enable them to regain their deposits. While the council election losing candidates are expected to gain at least 15%, those for National Assembly elections are supposed to gain at least 20.
Njie further informed participants that the last demarcation exercise conducted by the commission was in 2001 when some electoral districts were adjusted, and in 1998, the country’s electoral body attempted a demarcation exercise but the proposal didn’t get the approval of the National Assembly.
Author: by Gibairu Janneh