March 30, 2011 / 3:45 PM / in 7 years

Gambia sets presidential poll for November 24

BANJUL (Reuters) - Gambia will hold a presidential election on November 24, the head of the election commission said on Wednesday.

President Yahya Jammeh, who took control of the West African country in a military coup in 1994 and has won three elections since, has said he will seek another term.

Gambia, a sliver of land straddling the river of the same name, has been a rare example of stability in West Africa, though rights watchdogs say this has been achieved at great cost to human rights and press freedoms.

Jammeh’s rule has also been characterised by what critics say is paranoia and superstition.

He has jailed several members of his inner circle in recent years for allegedly plotting to overthrow him, and earned international notoriety in 2007 by claiming he could cure HIV/AIDS with herbs.

Parliamentary elections will be held in early 2012, and municipal elections will be held in early 2013, Alhaji Mustapha Carayol, the head of the election body, also told reporters at a news conference on Wednesday.

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