1. The Gambia continues to make significant progress in its democratic transformation (MEFP ¶1). Presidential and parliamentary elections were peacefully completed in December 2021 and April 2022, respectively. They were considered free and transparent by local and international observers. President Barrow won a second five-year term; his party and its alliance hold half of the parliamentary seats.1 The Government intends to issue soon a white paper on the way forward to national reconciliation and restoration of justice.2 The Gambia was hit by a fourth wave of the COVID- 19 pandemic (the Omicron) in late 2021-early 2022. New infection cases have dropped to close to zero since February 2022, notwithstanding a low vaccination rate (20.5 percent of the adult population) in the context of stepped-up vaccine supply and communication campaign (Text Figure 1).3
The Gambia is consolidating its democratic change by successfully organizing peaceful and transparent elections. President Barrow was reelected for a second five-year term in December 2021; his party and its alliance hold half of the parliamentary seats following an election in April 2022. A fourth wave of the COVID-19 pandemic hit the country in late 2021-early 2022. New infection cases have dropped to almost nil recently. The vaccination rate currently stands at about 20 percent of the adult population. The Gambia is already facing significant repercussions of the war in Ukraine.
1. Our Gambian authorities appreciate the candid engagement with staff during the recent fourth review of the Extended Credit Facility (ECF). They broadly share staff’s assessment and appreciate the Fund’s support at this difficult and uncertain time for Gambia and the global economy.