Halifa Sallah says Barrow’s gov’t has D56B debt

Tuesday, January 08, 2019

Halifa Sallah, the secretary general and leader of the People’s Democratic Organisation for Independence and Socialism (PDOIS) has stated that under Yahya Jammeh, in 2015, the trade deficit was D12 billion. He added that as of today, this new government has D56 billion debts on its head.

“The same disease that existed in the first and second republics is still continuing in the third republic,” he said.

Hon. Sallah, who is also the lawmaker for Serrekunda was speaking during a press conference over the weekend as the party convened a press briefing, in which he also highlighted issues that were discussed in their just concluded congress held in NBR. 

The Gambia, he said, is relying only on taxation and not bringing about what is called sovereign national wealth into formation. Hon. Sallah added that the First Republic by 1985 collapsed as revenues were no longer sufficient to pay for expenditure, adding that deficit-over-deficit borrowing to maintain the deficits had increased to over D2 billion in debts.

According to him, the Second Republic that existed for 22 years was in a similar situation, noting that the government’s debt increased because revenue couldn’t pay for expenditure, while export couldn’t pay for import.

The PDIOS’s resolutions, Hon. Sallah stated, affirms that they must build sovereign national wealth rather than a company being given the whole responsibility of mining Batakunkung, Sanyang and Kartong.

These minerals have been mined over the years without any forms of information coming to the public or the population, he said.

 “Now the existing government after being quiet for many months going to years, has told us that the enterprise has been given to a company and don’t have any institution that is established to partner 50-50 with that particular company, but rather only to be paying licence probably,” he held.   

He said that during their just concluded congress, they told their people that PDOIS has played a major role in implementing their resolution 2015 to ensure collaboration with all the stakeholders to effect the change that brought President Barrow into office on 19th of January 2017.

Author: Arfang M.S. Camara
Source: Picture: Halifa Sallah