Gambia’s President, Yahya Jammeh, according to reports by The Associated Press (AP), has “accepted defeat” after 22 years in power.
Gambians on Thursday started lining up at polling stations to elect a president, in polls that for the first time posed a serious challenge to Jammeh’s rule.
The former army colonel, who came to power during a 1994 military coup and rules the Islamic Republic with an iron fist, ran for a fifth five-year term against two other candidates – Adama Barrow, who had the support of seven political parties and is popular with the nation’s largely unemployed youth, and Mama Kandeh, the leader of the Gambia Democratic Congress, the only opposition party that did not join forces with Barrow.
According to a Tweet by @GambiaDecides, the IEC, Gambia’s Electoral Commission, has declared Barrow as the elected candidate in the poll.
Barrow says he is expecting a phone call from Jammeh to congratulate him on his victory.
Jammeh had banned international calls and the internet as the country headed for the polls. However, both have been restored.