Information and Communication Minister Demba Ali Jawo says the International
Donor Conference for The Gambia in Brussels was not to beg but to help fix a
Jawo in an exclusive interview with The Pont said: “It’s not a question of begging,” when told that’s how critics see the conference. “It’s a question of being realistic. The reality on the ground is that The Gambia inherited a broken economy and we need international assistance to fix that,” he said. “As well as to carry out the very comprehensive programmes the government has. So it’s just a question of capitalising the international goodwill to get some assistance from them.”
The conference which is jointly organised by The Gambia government and the European Union (EU) was to be co-chaired by President Barrow along with EU’s Federica Mogherini.
Asked what The Gambia has to put to donors, the veteran journalist said “what we going to put forward is the National Development Programme which is very comprehensive.” He continued: “We will put it to them that we got a very comprehensive programme in place but we’ll need assistance to implement it.”
According to the government spokesperson Minister Jawo, the expectations for donor conference were high.
“The expectations are really very high because as you know The Gambia has got a lot of international goodwill and we expect that international goodwill to be translated into pledges,” he noted. “At the end of the day, definitely we have high expectations that things will go the way we anticipated it to be.”
When asked if he knows how many countries are willing to make a pledge, the information minister said it would be difficult to say how many countries are willing to make a pledge and how much they are willing to pledge. He, however, said they are very hopeful that the conference would be a success.