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Gambia Bar Association Faults Kumba Jaiteh’s Dismissal

The Gambia Bar Association said it was seriously concerned by the recent executive decision purportedly revoking the nomination of Kumba Jaiteh as a National Assembly Member.

The young lawmaker’s nomination was revoked in a letter purportedly from the Office of the President and signed by the Secretary General, Ebrima O. Camara.

In a statement issued by the Bar Association’s newly-elected president Salieu Taal, it said the Executive decision was not in accordance with the Constitution.

“The power vested on the President by section 88(b) of the 1997 Constitution is limited to the nomination of five (5) National Assembly Members. Furthermore, there is no provision in the Constitution that grants the President the power or authority to revoke, dismiss, terminate or end the tenure of a nominated or elected member of the National Assembly,” the statement read.


Ya Kumba Jaiteh  photo credit: Westminster Foundation for Democracy

It argued that “it is pertinent to note that a nominated member of the National Assembly upon taking the prescribed oath, enjoys all the rights, privileges and protection afforded to all members of the National Assembly.”

The association also argued that the Executive through the Secretary General, has no jurisdiction over any nominated National Assembly Member once they are sworn into office. It advised the Executive to take cognizance of the sacrosanct principle of the separation of powers and respect for the rule of law.

“The powers exercised by the Executive arm of government, like other arms of government (judiciary and legislature) are subject to the limits set by the Constitution.
We therefore urge the Executive and those acting on their behalf to desist from preventing Hon. Kumba Jaiteh from discharging her duties as a member of the National Assembly.”

 

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