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‘UDP walks out of coalition talks’

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On Friday, the partners of the coalition 2016 are expected to converge at Kairaba Beach Hotel for the conclusion of their discussion on the review of their agenda. The Standard newspaper said the parties have already agreed to a five-year term for the president.

The United Democratic Party has walked out of the discussion being held at Kairaba Beach Hotel to review the agenda of the coalition, according to The Standard newspaper.

UDP’s decision to leave came after the parties refused their proposal to first sign the coalition Memorandum of Understanding before it will be reviewed.

An insider in the executive of one of the leading parties in the coalition confirm the story to Kerr Fatou. The source claims the intent of the UDP is to get the partners to sign the MOU so that the President will be compel to serve a 3-year term.

Kerr Fatou made attempts to reach the UDP spokesperson Almamy Taal but he could not be reached for comment.

Meanwhile, the parties to the agreement who took part in the Kairaba talks with the exception of Peoples’ Democratic Organization for Independence and Socialism have agreed to extend the agreed 3-year term for the president to 5 years, said the source.

Quoting an anonymous source, The Standard also reported that the amendment to the MOU will be sign on Friday.

The Gambian leader Adama Barrow who campaign on a 3-year mandate had already indicated his intentions to stay for 5 years.

According to the laws of the Gambia, the President’s term is five years and Barrow has already said several times that he does not need coalition partners’ consent to stay in power for five years.

Many critics said the talks at Kairaba were part of attempts by the coalition chair Fatoumatta Tambajang and her colleagues to make themselves relevant again in the political arena after they were sacked.

The PDOIS said the failure of the coalition began when they allowed to president to assume the mantle of leadership as an executive president.

The Coalition has had a guiding document loosely call “the MOU”. However, the document which was never signed was never respected by coalition partners from the beginning.

And the coalition secretariat that was proposed also never saw the light of day.

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