Mai calls for embargo on onions importation

Apr 6, 2022, 12:14 PM | Article By: Pa Modou Cham

As the country’s inflation continues to increase and the prices of onion keep escalating in many parts of the country, the party leader of Gambia Moral Congress (GMC), Mai Ahmed Fatty, pointed out the need for the country to place an “immediate interim embargo on the importation of onions,” adding there are sufficient locally produced onions for domestic consumption.

“We must promote and protect Gambian produce at all costs. A roadmap to national self-reliance and a veritable component of economic empowerment in the fight against poverty,” Mr. Fatty writes on his Facebook page.

The politician said the available supply of locally produced onions exceed demand within Wuli West District.

“It means Wulli West is at the moment self-sufficient in onion production. Further, it means that the Upper River Region (URR) alone, including Wulli West, has the potential to supply onions to the whole country, potentially rendering the nation self-sufficient in onion production, putting an end to onion importation.”

The politician, who will be contesting the April 9 National Assembly Election in Wulli West, continued that storage and structured marketing are the main challenges for the region and the district at large.

This is where formal intervention is needed for sustainability, he noted, adding a partnership between stakeholders such as the producer communities, Basse Area Council for storage and market, and the central government for enabling policy is needed.

“Wulli West is a big contributor to the regional URR economy. An estimated minimum of five million dalasis is transacted on each ‘lumo’ day once a week at Sare Ngai, potentially a whopping 20 million dalasi trade volume per month. This predominantly Fulani frontier village trading post must be upgraded and transformed with necessary support services and facilities, into a leading regional border trading hub.”

The one time Interior minister called on wholesalers of onion to visit Wulli West for quality, healthy locally produced onions, better than imported onions.

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