Washington, D.C. – IRI issued the following statement in response to the inauguration of President Adama Barrow on January 19, 2017.
“IRI congratulates President Adama Barrow on his inauguration in Dakar, Senegal earlier today as the democratically-elected leader of the Gambia. His inauguration is a testament to the courageous actions of the citizens of The Gambia, including IRI’s local youth partners, to uphold the results of the December 1, 2016 election.
“Adama Barrow defeated incumbent President Yayha Jammeh in an election judged to be free and fair by the international community, validated by the Gambian Independent Electoral Commission and initially respected by President Jammeh in his concession to President-elect Barrow following the announcement of the election result. IRI is deeply concerned by President Yayha Jammeh’s subsequent attempt to retain power, which has reportedly led to the displacement of over 25,000 Gambian citizens.
“IRI commends the international community, including the United Nations, African Union and most notably the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), which have demonstrated great leadership by seeking to broker a peaceful and democratic transition of power for The Gambia. ECOWAS proactively engaged all sides in an attempt to peacefully resolve this political crisis in defense of democracy and the will of the Gambian people. IRI also commends the UN Security Council for unanimously approving a resolution earlier today supporting Gambia’s new President, Adama Barrow.
“IRI stands ready to support the incoming government and democratic institutions in the Gambia during this political transition.”