By Buba Gagigo
The United Democratic Party (UDP) vowed to show Gambians evidence of “irregularities” they gathered in the December 4 election.
“The conduct of the vote counting was full of irregularities that made the result of the election null and void. Over the past three weeks, the United Democratic Party has carried out diligent investigation and placed evidence before the Supreme Court to demonstrate how the elections were stolen from The Gambian people.
“While we respect the decision of the Supreme Court as the apex judicial authority, we express our unreserved disappointment that the will of the Gambian people is once again suppressed. We will explore all legal options and ensure that the evidence gathered is presented to The Gambian people,” the party said in a statement on Thursday.
The Supreme Court on Tuesday struck-out the election petition case for non-compliance with rule 11 of Election Petition Rules, which required the UDP had to serve a notice of presentation of the petition and a notice of proposed cost to first respondent, Adama Barrow within five days after presentation of the petition.
“The Petition was served within 48 hours of filing and the Respondent had already commenced participating in the matter; UDP had applied for costs to be ordered. Indeed, costs of GMD 300,000 was ordered and paid immediately within the five-day period. Therefore, a notice of proposed cost was overtaken by events.
“Notice of the costs was given to the Respondent by the Master of the High Court and further re-issued a second time by UDP to the Respondent. All these steps were upheld by the Court. Surprisingly the Supreme Court decided to dismiss the entire Petition on a trivial point of technicality. It is even more disappointing that the Supreme Court chose to strike out the petition when striking out was not a remedy provided for by statute,” the party continued.
The party added that they had on the 24th of December filed 30 witness statements and over two thousand pages of ‘overwhelming evidence’ that established beyond any reasonable doubt.
“a. The conduct of the election was fraught with corrupt conduct and vote buying; b. Thousands of voters were added to the voter list after close of registration; c. Thousands of foreigners obtained voter cards in The Gambia illegally,” the party alleged.
The UDP also assured that it has not lost the Petition.
“UDP was driven from the seat of judgement by being barred from presenting evidence in support of its case.
“Despite the striking out of the Petition by the Supreme Court, the leadership of UDP calls on all its members to continue to be law abiding, while pursuing their legitimate constitutional rights of recruiting more people into the membership of the party,” they concluded.
The opposition party issued the statement today following the striking out of its case by the Supreme Court on Tuesday for non-compliance with rule 11 of the Election Petition Rules.
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