The presidential hopefuls of The Gambia’s largest opposition party Adama Barrow with the wife of the jailed party leader were at the Kairaba Hotel to support independent presidential candidate Dr. Isatou Touray.
Touray, 61, unveiled her candidacy on Friday in Banjul and vowed to restore the sovereignty of the people, end impunity and decentralize authority and power.
Barrow, a businessman and deputy treasurer of the UDP accepted his party’s nomination on Thursday and has called on political leaders in the country to unite and reclaim the nation of 1.9 million people.
“I wish to appeal to all Gambians, especially leaders of other parties, to unite together and lead a common cause,” Barrow said.
It is the first time in 20 years for the UDP to have a presidential candidate other than veteran human rights attorney Ousainou Darboe. Darboe was in July sentenced to three years in prison with other senior members of his party for taking part in a protest demanding the release of the UDP’s organizing secretary, who the UN confirmed dead.
Darboe wife, Maimuna Ndure Darboe demanded an audience with the president, Yahya Jammeh. Mrs. Darboe wants an end to the torture of detainees and for the government to introduce reforms in the prison and judicial systems, especially for remanded detainees, most of who have gone years without trial.
Touray said she is committed, if elected, to work with all those who have the capacity and commitment to salvage mainland Africa’s smallest country “as it titters to a state of collapse.”
It is the first time a woman is vying for the presidency in The Gambia.