Serrekunda Constituency Level Engagement On Freedom of Religion or Belief (FoRB), The Gambia.

On the 18th of June 2023, a community engagement was organized by the Africa Centre for
Parliamentary Affairs (ACEPA) in collaboration with The Gambian Parliamentary Caucus on
Freedom of Religion or Belief (FoRB), with the objective to campaign for the promotion
and protection of FoRB in The Gambia in Serrekunda Bartez. The meeting was moderated
by Ms. Fanta Secka ACEPA-FoRBLN Consultant in the Gambia.


The meeting which brought together members from the Community of Serrekunda
Constituency and Parliamentarians was held at Bartez which is in the centre of town within
the Kanifing Municipal Council. A total of 30 participants from these stakeholders
participated in this meeting. The meeting was opened with prayers from both the Muslim and
Christian participants.
The purpose of this engagement was to sensitize members of the Community of Serrekunda
on the concept of FoRB and the misconceptions surrounding it as well as address the
legislative barriers to Freedom of Religion or Belief (FoRB) and the social mores that support
societal hostility towards minority groups on account of their religion or belief.

WAY FORWARD
From the discussions, the following suggestions were forwarded for consideration:

  • The participants suggested MPs should increase parliamentary oversight of
    constitutional and quasi -constitutional bodies to make them accountable.
  • That there should be law reforms that help to expedite legislation addressing religious
    intolerance, hate speech and regulation of religious bodies.
  • The engagement of this nature should continue to other constituencies and on regular
    basis.