President Barrow Sunday opened 2020/2021 Legal Year
In an excerpt of his statement, President Barrow said:
“While we reflect on 2020 as a trying and extraordinary year globally, let me reassure you that my government remains firm and passionate about promoting and upholding good governance, the rule of law and respect for human rights, as spelt out in the National Development Plan (2018-2021).
Because the Plan ends this year, it is necessary that we begin the evaluation process of our performance so far, with a view to designing a successor plan. In the interim, we can pride ourselves on the significant achievements recorded in the key areas of good governance, human rights, rule of law and women empowerment.
Furthermore, all the institutions and mechanisms that we promised to deliver have been realised. They include the National Human Rights Commission, the Truth Reconciliation and Reparation Commission, the Constitutional Review Commission, the Security Sector Reform and the Women Enterprise Fund established under the Women Enterprise Fund Act, which seeks to uplift the socio-economic status of women. Several other schemes have been designed as well to transform the lives of our youth and the general populace.
Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen,
On International obligations, The Gambia is party to six core international human rights treaties, namely:
1. The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights;
2. The International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights;
3. The International Convention on the Elimination of All forms of Discrimination Against Women;
4. The International Convention on the Elimination of All forms of Racial Discrimination;
5. The Convention on the Rights of the Child, and
6. The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
As a signatory to these treaties, we are committed and determined as a State to respect and protect Human Rights. Accordingly, all of us must refrain from attempting to curb or interfere in the rights of any person in the country.
I am pleased and proud to state boldly that we are in full compliance with our reporting obligations on all the six core human rights treaties. In fact, my government has made substantial strides in safeguarding the rights of the Gambian people and all those within the jurisdiction of The Gambia. Institutional human rights violations are a thing of the past, and the Government is about to domesticate key human rights instruments.”