Gambians now have the chance to make input into a draft constitution that is to reform the country’s political system and way of life.
On Friday the government released the document to the public for discussions and reviews.
This is part of ongoing processes to get Gambia a new post-Jammeh era constitution that gives the country a fresher way of doing things.
President Adama Barrow took over from former President Yahya Jammeh in 2017 but the country wants to banish any footprint of Jammeh hoping for new beginning.
The current government tasked the body mandated with the mission to review the constitution, the Constitutional Review Commission of Gambia to work on a draft document.
Eleven members of the review commission have been able to work on the draft document after weeks of consultation.
Chairperson of the commission, Justice Cherno Jallow told reporters that his team studied the constitutions of quite a number of countries globally to shape what has been drafted.
“We are at a stage of developing a constitution that Gambians can look at and express opinions before the final draft,” he said.
Jallow said with the release of the draft document “what we expect is for people to read the draft constitution and understand it rather than to misunderstand it.”
He adds that “once the draft is published”, the document “would be the subject of constructive analysis from members of the public.”
After 18-month consultations, #Gambia
Constitutional Review Comm’n (CRC) today presented for comment a new post -Jammeh democratic Constitution. Strong rights . Limits Prez to 2 terms. https://t.co/tEAlOuvxMz… Explanations here https://t.co/g2mIZhTcWK… pic.twitter.com/rP7ffBmNS2
— Reed Brody (@ReedBrody) November 15, 2019
Top five proposals in new constitution:
The draft document has several reform proposals. Here are some of the interesting proposals:
- The new document proposes a two-five year term limit for the president
- The legislature cannot extend the mandate of a president
- The draft constitution proposes the disqualification of a presidential candidate without a university degree
- The draft Constitution comprises 20 chapters with a total of 315 clauses
- The draft document makes room for a cap to be placed on the number of Cabinet Ministers a President can appoint, setting it at fifteen, excluding the Attorney General and Minister of Justice
Many Gambians are hoping the document will get the needed review and discussion before the final document is approved by the national assembly.