Banjul – CSOs, Councillor Ask Court to Stop Mayor Lowe Issuing Attestations
Two Civil Society organizations, Gambia Participates and the Centre for Research and Policy Development supported by the Councilor for Box Bar Ward, Banjul North Councilor Abdou Aziz Gaye, on June 23rd, 2021, filed a summons before the High Court of The Gambia to challenge the legality of the Mayor of Banjul, Rohey Malick Lowe, the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) and the Attorney General issuing attestations to potential voters.
The complainants challenge the legality and validity of the mandate that enables the Mayor of Banjul to issue attestations to constituents of the City of Banjul in the ongoing IEC general voter registration ahead of the December 4th Presidential and subsequent elections.
“We contend that the unlawful issuance of attestation to constituents is not in conformity with the relevant laws in the Gambia; therefore, a serious contravention of the Elections Act at the instance of both the Mayor of Banjul and the Independent Electoral Commission” the complainants have explained in a press release announcing the filing of their summons.
According to them, “There is no legislation that mandates a “Mayor” to issue attestations to constituents to apply for a voter’s card as this power and authority is only vested to Village Alkalo or District Chief (Seyfo) as per section. 12(2)(e). Therefore, the actions of the IEC and the Mayor are in conflict with the laws governing voter registration and are, therefore, ultra vires and a grave violation of the Election Act and other relevant laws“.
Gambia Participates, the Centre for Research and Policy Development and Councilor Abdou Aziz Gaye seek that the High Court declares that the actions of the Mayor of Banjul in issuing attestations to constituents of the City of Banjul as well as the IEC in conferring the power to the Office of the Mayor of Banjul to administer attestation forms.
The complainants consequently seek that the Court issue an order nullifying the process, the issued attestations, and the voters’ cards obtained from the IEC via the Mayor of Banjul’s issuance of attestations.