President Adama Barrow, who is currently on a countrywide tour is fulfilling a constitutional requirement.
The bridge and roads when complete is expected to provide vital access in connecting communities, goods and services of the entire districts in the region. The bridge, which is 80%complete is also expected to provide easy access for people to connect the Laminkoto-Passamas road.
“We are making history today. Nobody thought that this area would be constructed. However, today everybody has seen us crossing through this bridge. This is a fact that nobody will dispute. I want to sincerely thank you people for the good work that’s ongoing here. This is huge for the people of this area and key for the people of The Gambia. It’s connecting the north and the south of URR on trades, communication and health and even the sub-region among others,” President Barrow said.
According to Mr. Barrow, after the completion of the bridge, communities around the area won’t need to use the south bank road to travel up to Farafenni.
“You will just come to Basse and cross the bridge and use the Laminkoto-Passamas road. This route is short. In fact, it’s 70 kilometres shorter than the south route.”
“I want to thank the people of China and the personnel who are currently constructing the bridge. We are very proud of you. This project will make a huge difference in the lives of Gambians. I am also proud as a president, because I come from this region. I grew up here. I used to cross this place to go to fetch firewood from the other end of the river.”
“I will come here without even having fares to cross using the small boats. However, there was one man called Samba Juma who is late now. He would help me to cross. He was a very good man. If you come and you can’t cross, he would ask you to wait and then he would help you to cross to either end of the river. The poor boy who was crossing the river is now the one who is constructing the bridge as a president.”
“This is huge for me and it's historic. For my five year term, even if this was my only project, I think we have done enough to make Gambian people proud. I am proud of my government and my ministers and the entire Gambian people for the support, because without them it would not have been possible. This is huge, and we will not forget the generosity from the Chinese people. Once again, on behalf of Gambian people we thank you so much for the support,” he remarked, saying: “People who were doubting us before, will not doubt us today. This is not a dream but it’s now a reality.”
Dampha Kunda meeting
At Dampha Kunda meeting on Wednesday, locals from the Tumana District appealed to the president to help them with hospitals, good roads and ambulances. They pointed out that Tumana is the only district that does not have a health facility.
Women who spoke at the meeting also urged the president to help them with clean water, milling machines and gardens.