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Wood re-exporters convey general meeting

Feb 3, 2012, 2:29 PM | Article By: Abdoulie Nyockeh

The Association of Wood Re-exporters and Forest Users in The Gambia recently held a general meeting for its members and other stakeholders.

Also present at the meeting were representatives of the Gambia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI), the Ministry of Forestry and the Environment, among others.

Held at the association’s office opposite the FIB Bank in Fajikunda, the meeting attracted over one hundred and fifty participants.

The meeting was held to enable its members have a single forum with their committee and discuss challenges, progress, achievements and constraints affecting their association with special attention on the experience of 2011.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, the Chief Executive Officer GCCI, Almami Taal, said his mission at the meeting was also to listen carefully to the issues that were discussed by members of the association since they are also a member of the GCCI.

“We are partner with Government and Government recognizes the chamber as the voice of the private sector,” he said.

He used the opportunity to thank the association for organizing such a “very important forum” and advised them to be law-abiding and respect each other’s views as well as work hand in hand for the best interest of the country.

He also advised members of the association to always pay their taxes as required by law.

For his part, Alpha Jallow representing the Consumers Action Group, which is a consumer’s organization, said he was delighted to be part of the meeting.

According to Jallow, the association has expressed some difficulties some of its members are currently facing regarding receiving their licence lately. He therefore urged the Ministry of Forestry to assist them in getting them registered so they can continue their work.

“Looking at what this association is putting into Government coffers in a form of taxes and other dues it really needs more support and encouragement,” he said, adding that their contribution stand at D58,868,800.

For his part, the chairman of the Association of Wood Re-exporters and Forest Users in The Gambia, hailed the members and other stakeholders for the large turnout at the meeting.

Lamin Barrow thanked the Gambia government for creating an environment conducive for them to operate.

He reaffirmed the association’s commitment in complementing the efforts of the Ministry of Forestry and the Environment to ensure that the Gambian forest is well protected.

He also expressed satisfaction with the support that his association is receiving from the Ministry of Forestry and the Environment through the Hon. Minister Jatto Sillah.

Other speakers on the occasion included Babucarr Badjie from the Department of Forestry, who also advised the association’s members to be mindful of intruding the Gambian forest, saying that any body found wanting “will not be spared as far as the law of the country is concerned”.

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