Results from Saturday’s presidential elections show Gambia’s President Adama Barrow won re-election by 53%, though his contenders have rejected the results because of unspecified anomalies.
Crowds of people gathered in a park opposite the presidential palace to listen to Barrow speak.
“Democracy has taken its course,” Barrow told the cheering crowd after the results were announced. “I have been the lucky person to be chosen by you. I’ll use all the resources to make Gambia a better place for all.”
The is the first election in 27 years without former President Yahya Jammeh, who was forced into exile in Equatorial Guinea after refusing to accept defeat to Barrow in 2016. It is also the first election in many years where voters cast their ballot without having to worry about being observed, intimidated or arrested after voting.
Saturday’s peaceful election was seen by many as a victory for democracy that helped draw a line under that troublesome period.
Barrow’s nearest rival, political veteran Ousainou Darboe won about 28% in Saturday’s vote and two other candidates, Mama Kandeh and Essa Mbye Faal, said they would not accept the results because the results took longer than expected and because of problems at polling stations.
“We are concerned that there had been an inordinate delay in the announcement of results,” their statement said. “A number of issues have been raised by our party agents and representatives at the polling stations.”
They did not provide specifics or evidence of wrongdoing.
The statement did not say what they would do now, only stating that “all actions are on the table.”