Gambians vote in the first serious electoral challenge to President Yahya Jammeh, who has said only Allah can remove him from office and once claimed he would rule the tiny riverside West African nation for ''a billion years''. Mana Rabiee reports.
The voting in Gambia was the first serious challenge to President Yahya Jammeh in over two decades. Rallies for his main challenger had attracted thousands… a rare show of defiance to a leader who just this past week said only Allah can remove him from office, and in a country where better-known leading opposition figures remained in jail. Businessman Adama Barrow promised to revive the economy, one of the most sluggish in the region. He vowed to end widespread human rights abuses, allegations Jammeh and his supporters denied. But Jammeh, who seized power in a 1994 coup, also attracted large crowds to his rallies, where he railed against Western interference in African internal affairs. Voting was done by marbles to accommodate the county's illiteracy and prevent election fraud. News accounts said international calling and internet service was down across Gambia on Election Day, and results were not expected to come in right away.