Assembly Member (NAM) for Serrekunda, during a last week debate at the Assembly
said a government that intends to do justice will look at the provisions of
laws that enable her to do things in a transparent, accountable manner because
that will move the country forward.
After two adjourned dates of the National Assembly debate due to the absence of the president, the vice president, Isatou Jallow Tambang appeared by virtue of Section 77 (3) of the 1997 Constitution of The Gambia where it states the vice president shall answer in the Nation Assembly for matters affecting the president, and the president shall be entitled to send a message to the National Assembly to be read on his or her behalf by the vice-president.
Hon. Sallah said; “We have done nothing to have a turnaround of The Gambia economy, we have not even started.”
He said rice production on import in 2014 in terms of importation of rice, we spent D1.9 billion to import rice in 2015, D1.7 billion in 2016, D1.4 billion in 2017, D2 billion in 2018, D2.4 billion in 2019 and “we are importing rice.”
“What have been done to ensure that our farmers have seeds, fertilizers, and the farming implements to be able to produce rice? That 2.4 billion would have been in their hands,” he said. “That is how to eradicate poverty. The sooner we realise that we could start to move if we fail to realise that we would continue to move backward not forward.”
He said there are lots of Gambians in the Diaspora, many of them are aging and they would not want to die in those countries. The minister of Foreign Affairs needs to go and do documentation, data collections of all those Gambians and find what they are actually doing. They should not only stop at the National Development Plan. They must move with speed and demand.
Hon. Sallah said it is important for public relations to be established in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs where all these Gambians; whatever their problems maybe, will be able to go and report at the ministry so that they will begin to articulate what type of relations they are going to have with those countries so that they will not lose their entitlement and other things.
He quoted the Local Government Act Section 144 which states how alkalolu and chiefs will cease office and on what basis could they be removed under Section 145 and the 1997 Constitution provides on how to make provision for those people.
“A government which want transparent, just, which want to govern in a proper manner will never engage in the past exercise of just simply removing somebody at a place and replacing him with somebody because you claim that a constitution gives you rights to remove and replace,” he argued.
The NAM for Banjul South, Fatoumatta Njie, said on climate change, she observes the private sector doing a lot more than the government and that is “disappointing.”