Aug 13, 2020, 11:05 AM
Amid crisis that has shattered global economies and crippled businesses, there is need to intensify our collective prayers and submit to one and only creator, Allah, Who is all Knowing, all Hearing and all Seeing.
Pertinent on the agenda is Agriculture on which famers are expected to tell about what they expect from your government to facilitate the sales of their produce particularly groundnuts and to help them with fertilisers and equipment. So please take time to listen to them and think of a common solution to their challenges. The tour is not meant for politics, it’s about you getting first-hand information from the ordinary citizens and you finding solutions.
People will be talking about the need for electricity and water supply, good roads, health centers, hospitals, ambulances and even education among others.
Mr. President more security is needed for the populace since armed robbers have started attacking people again in their houses and carting away their properties.
We were informed about two incidents; one being 26 November 2020, where a Supreme Court judge and her daughter fell victim. The mobile phones of the judge and jewelries were all reportedly stolen despite two security guards being on duty.
In the other, a Syrian doctor was attacked by armed robbers. Now as we enter the month of festivities, the security personnel should double their efforts for rounding up during nights to blunt the effect suspected criminals.
Mobility should be made easy for them and also mobile phones and credit. Security personnel should monitor places like Westfield Cooperative and Coastal Roads for bandits are known for pick-pocketing and bag-snatching.
Mr. President, the armed robbers wear masks with spray gas, wield cutlasses and pistols to eliminate their victims in case of resistance and take their belongings.
Police should have special numbers for people to give them tip-offs, information about what is happening or about to happen their areas.
The Gambia is known for peace and hospitality. Few groups or rogue elements must not be allowed to tarnish the name of the country. People should cooperate with the police to make their jobs easier by informing in time and on time of activities.
On COVID-19, Mr. President, we have recorded a spike these few days which signals that the pandemic could resurface. Ministries of Health and Interior should take extra measures to avoid the resurface or second wave of the pandemic.
It’s a wakeup call for everybody not to be complacent about the deadly disease.
Police should go around for people to wear masks in public places. The pandemic has risen up in Senegal and the government there is taking strict measures to control it.
Finally Mr. President, Mr. Mambury Njie, Finance minister has cleared the air for the proposed D54.4 million loan for the MPS.
He told them that "the process used to allocate themselves loans is not ideal."
Mr. President, loan requires some rules: guarantor and collateral and the 16 months which is a short period to repay. Hence it will be difficult if not impossible for them to pay the loan since they have only 16 months before the next election.
April 6, 2022, will be parliamentary elections and government is facing numerous financial problems because of the COVID-19.
The better solution is to wait till 2022 to see how best loans of the MPs could be settled. It’s difficult for a member of parliament to take D1 million and repay it within 16 months, putting into account their basic salaries which is just D22, 500 per month.
Business is an essential human activity that people engage in to earn their living. It is also a fundamental means of promoting the economic wellbeing of a nation. Thus, it is important that those who are engaged in this crucial activity do it with honesty and empathy.