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President Adama Barrow began the readmission process in February last year / Photo: Adama Barrow Twitter

Gambia rejoins Commonwealth of Nations

The Gambia was readmitted to The Commonwealth on Thursday, welcomed back into the fold after its sudden pullout in 2013.

Former President Yahya Jammeh dramatically withdrew the West African nation in October 2013, branding the group an “extension of colonialism”.

President Adama Barrow began the readmission process in February last year.

Barrow’s formal application last month for The Gambia to rejoin the Commonwealth received unanimous backing from the other members.

A formal ceremony later on Thursday marked the occasion.

The decision means there are once again 53 member states in the Commonwealth, the voluntary association of Britain and most of the countries that it colonised in the past.

The Gambia will now be invited to attend the organisation’s biennial summit, to be held in London in April.

“When The Gambia left in 2013, the heads of government expressed their regret in its leaving the Commonwealth family,” Secretary-General Patricia Scotland said.

“We’ve looked forward to The Gambia’s return and were delighted when… 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 Gambia first became a Commonwealth member on its independence from Britain in 1965.

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