Soldiers in Gambia have now vacated the premises of the country’s electoral commission headquarters after occupying the facility for weeks.
The soldiers prevented officials of the commission that managed the country’s December 1 elections from having access to their offices to work.
Africanews reported that a government announcement said staff of the commission can now return to work.
The announcement said the main reason for soldiers occupying the facility was due to threats to burn down the building. It said ‘‘Now that the threat has abated, the IEC head office will reopen,’‘.
The Gambian government has also accused some media outlets of spreading false news about the country and warned it was aware of such news outlets.
Citizens of Gambia have also been told in the government statement that they have no cause to be worried about the political future of the country.
President Yahya Jammeh was defeated in the December 1 elections by the Adama Barrow who has been declared president elect of Gambia. Mr. Jammeh after conceding defeat days later announced he will not accept the results and has petition the Supreme Court which is due to hear the case on January 10, 2017.
Mr. Jammeh has refused to step down after leaders of the Economic Community of West Africa (ECOWAS) urged him to exit power when his tenure ends next year. He has called the bluff of ECOWAS saying “Already the ECOWAS meeting was a formality. Before they came, they had already said Jammeh must step down. I will not step down”.
Meanwhile there are indications there are indications ECOWAS will apply force in getting Mr. Jammeh out of power if he fails to step down next year when his tenure expires.
The president of the regional bloc, Marcel de Souza has said that standby forces have been put “on alert” should Mr. Jammeh refuse to step down on Jan. 19.