Gambia's Barrow Wins Easy Majority in Parliamentary Vote

  • Pro-Barrow parties win total 42 out of 53 legislative seats
  • Legislative vote seen cementing transition to democracy

Voters in Gambia handed the political parties supporting President Adama Barrow a majority of seats in parliament, making it easier for the new government to carry out social reforms needed after the 22-year rule of ex-dictator Yahya Jammeh.

Barrow’s United Democratic Party won by a landslide with 31 out of 53 parliamentary seats in Thursday’s elections, the electoral commission said Friday on state TV. Political parties that support Barrow won an additional combined 11 seats, while two opposition parties obtained 10 seats. One seat went to an independent candidate.

Barrow, 52, defeated Jammeh in presidential elections in December with the support of seven political parties that had rallied behind him amid growing discontent with the former leader’s erratic and repressive regime. He needs a two-thirds majority in parliament to pass bills.

Jammeh was ousted by West African leaders in January after he refused to acknowledge the results of the presidential vote, even though he initially congratulated Barrow with his victory and said he was going to retire to his farm. Jammeh’s APRC party, which doesn’t have a leader, got 5 seats.

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