Feature Story

Constitutional Review Commission of The Gambia leads constitutional review process with International IDEA assistance

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Supporting greater understanding of the new constitution and the constitutional review process

In 2018, at the request of Ministry of Justice in The Gambia, International IDEA’s Constitution-Building programme began working with the newly established Constitutional Review Commission of The Gambia (CRC). The main functions of the CRC were to review and analyse the 1997 Constitution, and to draft and write a report about a new constitution.

Through various events and advisory services, International IDEA provided the CRC with guidance and helped develop an online public participation platform to support survey development, data management and data analysis as part of the CRC’s public consultation activities. In November 2019 the CRC released the highly anticipated draft constitution for public review and parliamentary scrutiny. The draft, if approved by referendum in 2020, will replace the 1997 Constitution, which was developed by the military dictatorship of former President Yahya Jammeh.

The draft constitution includes a strengthened bill of rights, a more robust separation of powers, and special measures to increase the participation of women and youth.

At the launch of the draft constitution the CRC chair recognized the contribution of International IDEA: ‘We were able to benefit from the expert partnership and guidance of the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance, and I am proud to say that we continue to enjoy the partnership.’

Our Constitution-Building programme will continue to work with the CRC to strengthen the draft constitution, and has also begun supporting members of the National Assembly who will be tasked with reviewing, debating and voting on the draft in 2020.

View the Draft Constitution from the Constitutional Review Commission of The Gambia


Through events and advisory services, International IDEA supported constitution makers in The Gambia to increase knowledge and skills to make more informed choices regarding constitutional design and processes.

Read more stories about International IDEA's results in our Annual Outcome Report 2019: Democracy In Action.