By Lamin Cham
The United Democratic Party has finally expelled its elected Chairman of Brikama Area Council Sheriffo Sonko.
The party’s spokesman Almamy Fanding Taal confirmed to The Standard yesterday that Mr Sonko’s expulsion letter has been dispatched to his office.”He was not found at the office but it was sent to his house. We have also by procedure copied the Independent Electoral Commission,” Mr Taal said.
The UDP has also expelled two other councilors, Bilal Faal and Momodou Bojang, who they claimed refused to accept his expulsion letter.
According to the Local Government Act, when an elected councilor or chairman ceases to be a member of the party which sponsored him or her to the office,either by resignation or expulsion, he or she will automatically lose that elective seat. This means that a by-election will have to be called within 90 days, in this case for the entire West Coast Region.
The Chairman of the Independent Electoral Commission Alieu Momarr Njai confirmed that his office has received the UDP’s letter expelling BAC chairman.”We are now waiting for the Brikama Area Council to formally notify us about the development there before we can act,” he said.
Mr Njai further confirmed that once the council formally informs his office about this development, the IEC will be obliged to call a by-election.
When the by-election, which must be called within 90 days takes place, it will be the biggest electoral exercise since 2018 with a total of 281,115 voters in West Coast Region heading to the polls.
“That will be a mini presidential election especially if all the parties contest. There could also be alliances. It could be the test of how the arena will look like in 2021 Presidential election,” one political commentator told The Standard. This paper tried to get comments from Chairman Sonko without success.