The Gambia rejoins the
Commonwealth family
today, almost five years
after leaving it.
A flag-raising ceremony,
at Marlborough House,
the London headquarters
of the Commonwealth
Secretariat, will mark its
return.
C o m m o n w e a l t h
Secretary-General, Patricia
Scotland, Chair of the
Executive Committee of
the Board of Governors,
Norman Hamilton,
members of the Committee,
and The Gambian High
Commissioner, Francis
Blain, will attend the
ceremony.
The decision to begin
the process of applying
for re-admission was
made in February, 2017 by
President Adama Barrow,
who came to power
following elections in
December, 2016.
Last December, the
parliament of The
Gambia unanimously
affirmed the country’s
desire to rejoin the
Commonwealth, thereby
fulfilling one of the final
steps in the organisation’s
membership process.
Its application was
unanimously supported
by the current 52-member
states and The Gambia will
now be invited to attend
the Commonwealth Heads
of Government Meeting,
CHOGM, in April in
London.
S e c r e t a r y – G e n e r a l
Scotland said, “When
The Gambia left in 2013,
the heads of government
expressed their regret
in its leaving the
Commonwealth family.
We have looked forward
to The Gambia’s return
and were delighted when,
after his election victory
last year, President Barrow
pledged to return. The
Gambia’s application
to rejoin has been
unanimously accepted
by all 52-member states,
who welcome back their
brothers and sisters to
again play their full part
in the Commonwealth
family.”
The flag-raising
ceremony will take place
on today at 1100, in the
gardens of Marlborough
House.
The Gambia first
became a member of
the Commonwealth in
1965, when it gained
independence from Britain.
There are now 53 members
of The Commonwealth,
representing more than 2.4
billion people.
The ceremony takes
place just two months
before the Commonwealth
Heads of Government
meeting, which is taking
place in London for the
first time since 1986, and
for the first time in the
United Kingdom since the
1997 Edinburgh summit.

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