now browsing by category
NIGERIANS IN DIASPORA AWARDS – THE GAMBIA at the Ocean Bay Resort in Cape Point, on Saturday 23rd of November 2019 at 8pm.
A memorable night celebrating the brotherhood between The Gambia and Nigeria.
This event will have in attendance top Nigerian professionals who have contributed immensely to the legal, education, medical, commerce, diplomatic and military fields among many others in the Republic of The Gambia. Nigerians have rendered their support to this nation through the Federal Government Technical Aid Programme as well as through other formal and informal bodies.
European Tourists visiting The Gambia despite Thomas Cook’s liquidation
European travel agents bringing tourists and other visitors to The Gambia have confirmed that despite Thomas Cook UK Plc and associated UK entities that recently entered compulsory liquidation, reservations to Banjul will continue and that is “not” affecting bookings as previously thought.
Several interesting locations in the country such as The Gambia National Museum, Abuko Nature Reserve, Kachikally Crocodile Pool and Bijilo Forest Park have been revealed and identified for European travelers and tourists to experience during their stay in The Gambia.
Certain towns and villages such as Banjul, Brufut Beach and Wassu were branded as “stunning places to see.” Serekunda Market and Tanji Fish Market are also recommended for tourists.
In a rare shift portraying the country as ‘‘dictatorship that could easily slide into an unpredictable event’’, the European Press is currently depicting the Gambia as a ‘‘good country to visit’, taking into consideration the current political dispensation.
Respected media organizations now consider the country as ‘‘friendly and attractive for visitors’’ and further highlighted many areas of interest to visitors.
The reputable and respectable Telegraph in the UK has revealed more than a dozen ‘‘reasons’’ for visiting The Gambia. It includes ‘‘cruising the river Gambia; bird watching at dawn; meet some island-whooping chimps.”
The paper also disclosed to tourists some personal areas that may be worth experiencing such as ‘‘tracing the grim history of the slave trade and visiting an art village.” Even ‘‘hanging out with village elders’’ was also cited to European tourists.
Notwithstanding, in some quarters, visitors are cautioned to be careful and suspicious during certain dealings or movements; however, the general view is optimistic and sanguine.
A ‘‘tourism advice’’ script seen by this correspondent also revealed that the Gambian Ministry of Tourism and Culture had ‘averted the sudden trauma against its industry during the event of Thomas Cook’s cessation.”
It further revealed that Hamat N.K. Bah, Gambian Minister of Tourism and Culture ‘‘handling of the incident was remarkable.” It added that an ‘‘inclusive meeting of all stakeholders both inside and outside of the country seeking remedial actions yielded a very positive results.”
President Adama Barrow has promised to set up an enquiry to investigate the Sunday night fire incident at Jimpex.
The fire incident reportedly broke out from the gas depot on Sunday evening spreading to the nearby companies, warehouses and car garages.
The incident claimed several properties including buildings and vehicles in the vicinity of Jimpex – Kanifing Industrial Area. The area is designated to be an industrial area and it hosts several factories including gas factories.
“An enquiry team will be set-up to look into what had happened and to establish the facts that caused the fire,’’ he said.
Barrow said the investigation will be to inquire as to what caused the fire and for the team to provide them with the recommendations on how to prevent a recurrence of such fire incidents in the country.
“It is a very unfortunate and difficult situation….We cannot thank enough the respondents from the fire service team for the hard work. They work under very difficult circumstances, but the good thing is they are determined to put out the fire and contain the situation,” President Barrow told the press, adding preventive measures will be taken to reassess the safety standards in place at similar facilities across the country.
President Barrow announced that the government will set up a commission of inquiry to look into what had happened in order to establish facts around the cause of the fire and how to avoid future recurrence..
After enquiry, he said the damage caused by the fire will be assessed, adding that from there they would know what exactly happened and what government can do. Additionally, the assessment will further enable the government to establish the level of damage caused, he added. President Barrow assured that the government will give all the support within its capacity to the victims of the incident.
Kisham Reepchandans, who was in tears while speaking to reporters, said his company had many building materials such as toilets seat, teals, water paint and tools for building.
“My business is finished now. I lost around 10 to 15 million dalasi. I cannot survive. I cannot continue, because all my hard-work since 25 years ago….., all I worked for from evening and night is gone. I’ve to pay people’s load,’’ he said while tears filled his eyes.
“I cannot continue,’’ he added. “It started when a gas company’s tank of gas was leaking on Sunday. It exploded and was spreading all over and it then hit my store and everything went on fire,’’ he said.
“I’ve 15 employed Gambians and 3 Indian employees. I’m completely finished. I cannot work now. President Barrow who is a good friend was here and has also felt sorry about the incident. I was not here when the leaking happened because Sunday was not a working day,’’ he explained.
He continued: “People living within the area saw the leaking and informed the company owner.”
He said no one informed him that a gas tank was leaking in the nearby company. He said he received the information about the incident after the intervention of the Fire and Rescue Service.
“It was our Indian festival on that Sunday, we were at home with our family. We couldn’t do anything since everything vanished away,’’ he said.
Dodou Trawally, the Executive Director of the National Environment Agency (NEA), said they usually do rapid assessment when such incidents happen. He added that a team of inspectors from Fire Service, NEA and Disaster Management are on the ground to ascertain what caused the incident.
He said, “We feel people really need to know what’s happening. We’re waiting for the Police to help us with the crowd for the inspectors to do their job. The rapid assessment would be able to know how many cars, building and properties were damaged.’’
“Looking around, you will know a huge damage occurred here,’’ he said.
Abdul Rasheed the owner of Pure & Drinking Water company said he has been operating since 2006. He added that he lost 5 million dalasi after the gas explosion.
“I lost dozens of bottles of water. My two standby generators were burnt but the water processing machine is saved,’’ he said. He added, “we would like compensation from the government, but we will also file report and proceed to a lawyer.’’
Hadim Gogan, the owner of the gas-company said the inferno consumed the consignment of gas he ordered for the country.
He explained: “The problem started when the gas-tanks arrived and some were discharged. We cannot ascertain what coursed the explosion until the investigators are ready.”
Hadim said he cannot estimate the loss he incurred as a result of the fire incident. He added that nobody lost his live as a result of the incident.
Hundreds of millions of people worldwide are at risk of losing their homes as entire cities sink under rising seas over the next three decades, according to researchers.
Government imposes water cuts and gives aid to farmers as part of emergency measures to fight severe drought.
South Africa is experiencing what many farmers say is the driest season they can remember. They are having to sell their livestock, and this is having a knock-on effect on the economy.
In response to the lack of water, the government has imposed emergency measures to restrict water use and improve supply infrastructure.
Robert Evans, whose charisma rivaled some of the actors who appeared in the hit films he produced, died Saturday, according to his publicist Monique Evans.
Thousands more people are without homes after two days of rain and severe flooding in the Central African Republic.
On Sunday, the government said more than 20,000 people have been made homeless across its provinces and additional 8,000 in the capital, Bangui.
A coordinator for one of the makeshift camps set up for residents displaced by the floods in Bangui is concerned that more homes were likely to fall.
To see something that you spent years building collapse, that is hard, I feel sad.
“Really, we need assistance. Some homes were destroyed, families are outside their homes. It is hard when you leave your house, unexpectedly. To see something that you spent years building collapse, that is hard, I feel sad”, Rock Lionnel Koigningbo said.
The situation has worsened following the overflow of the Oubangi river, located in the southwest of the capital. The State is appealing for international support.
Firmin Ngrebada is Prime Minister for the Central African Republic.
“The government is working hard since the start of this catastrophe to help our compatriots who are in distress, but in view of the scale of the disaster and in particular the difficult situation the country finds itself in, the government. I with the authority of the President of the republic and Head of State, accordingly declare a national catastrophe and we are appealing for national and international solidarity”, Ngrebada said.
According to authorities, heavy rains in recent weeks have caused an unusual increase in the rising levels of the Oubangi river.
Section 44 of the Constitution states:
“The Independent Electoral Commission shall submit its annual estimates of expenditure to the President for presentation to the National Assembly in accordance with this Constitution. The President shall cause the estimates to be placed before the National Assembly without amendment, but may attach to them his or her own comments and observations.”
Hence the IEC is supposed to regulate the income of its Commissioners and staff, make projections regarding its requirements of its operations, and submit a realistic budget to the National Assembly.
The Executive has no mandate to alter the budget of the IEC. It is therefore hoped that as the new electoral cycle begins the IEC will be able to execute its duties.
The Gambia Government has accepted the recommendations made by the Janneh Commission against former leaders of the AFPRC Military Government.
The recommendations are contained in the White Paper published by the Government shortly after cabinet met and deliberated on the findings and recommendations of the Commission. See the Government’s decision below:
Mr Ebou Jallow, Mr Edward Singhateh, and Mr Yankuba Touray were all soldiers of the Gambia Armed Forces and together with former President Jammeh, constituted the Armed Forces Provisional Ruling Council (AFPRC) in 1994. They held various positions in Government including Spokesperson of the AFPRC, Vice Chairman of the AFPRC, and Minister of Local Government, respectively.
The Commission found, inter alia, that they were involved in financial dealings of the AFPRC and its Chairman former President Jammeh.
The Commission found that the AFPRC forged diplomatic relations with Taiwan in the expectation of obtaining financial aid for their Transition Programme. Taiwan gave The Gambia a loan of $35 million. The Commission found that Mr Jallow negotiated for $5 million cash payment of the said loan on the instructions of former President Jammeh which was bought to The Gambia by special flight and presented to the AFPRC. Mr Jallow and Mr Edward Singhateh deposited the amount of $2.3 million at the Central Bank of The Gambia. $2.7 million has not been accounted for amidst claims that it was handed over to former President Jammeh. Mr Yankuba Touray was responsible for supervising the Transitional Programme projects.
The Commission found that the AFPRC failed to account for $32,220,000 of the loan from Taiwan, and that they are jointly and severally liable or answerable for the amounts not accounted for. The Commission noted further that the ouster clauses under the Second Schedule of the 1997 Constitution do not apply as the members of the AFPRC were not acting in the performance of their official duties or in exercise of their executive powers when they operated outside the framework of the law and/or misappropriate public funds.
The Government accepts the findings of the Commission in so far as they relate to Mr Ebou Jallow, Mr Edward Singhateh, and Mr Yankuba Touray. The Government has noted that the collective actions of the AFPRC in overthrowing a democratic government in 1994 set the stage and substantially enabled former President Jammeh perpetrate and perpetuate the unprecedented looting of The Gambia’s meager resources to the detriment of the country.
Consequently, the government has decided that they (Mr. Ebou Jallow, Mr. Edward Singhateh and Mr. Yankuba Touray) are not fit to hold public office and should be banned, and Mr. Ebou Jallow, Mr. Edward Singhateh and Mr. Yankuba Touray are hereby banned from holding public office for the remainder of their lives. They are also banned from holding any director positions in any state-owned enterprises in The Gambia for fifteen (15) years from the date of publication of this White Paper.
Mr. Ebou Jallow, Mr. Edward Singhateh and Mr. Yankuba Touray are hereby ordered to pay back to the state the sum of $32, 220, 000 within 30 days from the publication of this White Paper failing which their properties will be forfeited to the state and sold. The proceeds of sale shall be applied to the payment of monies for which they are found to be liable for in the report, in addition to criminal proceedings to be instituted against them.
The Chief of Protocol at the State House has on Monday, 28th October 2019, testified that his former boss President Yahya Jammeh used to have sexual relationship with some ladies.
Alagie Ceesay said he was responsible for coordinating meetings and trips for the former President. Ceesay testified there were girls who were having sexual relations with former President Yahya Jammeh. He said there were girls living in the State House while some others used to come after working hours who used to have sexual relationship with the Gambia’s former president.
The 59 – year – old said one Jimbe Jammeh was the link between the girls and the former President and she was responsible for facilitating their meeting.
The Protocol Officer confirmed to the TRRC several names of women who the former President used to have sexual relations with, although they are under protection by the Commission. He said there were girls who were brought to him by the former President as protocol officers at the Office of the President.
Ceesay said the normal process of employing these girls as protocol officers would require his involvement and the Public Service Commission but instead, these women were employed based on Jammeh’s directive.
“It was an executive directive that select these protocol officers. You don’t have a choice. There were lot of them who came, mostly girls,” said Ceesay.
“You have a lot of them who were academically limited… I would find some of them to be good but others, not… It was an open secret. Some of them are “Special Ladies,” Ceesay said.
He said even the officials working at the State House at the time knew that the issue of protocol officer is obscure. The girls were being used for something else – sexual relation.
He said the former First Lady used to travel frequently and he does not know why she used to travel every time.
Mr Ceesay was re-appointed Chief of Protocol by President Adama Barrow in 2017. He was appointed Permanent Secretary at the Office of the President in 2009 and promoted to the portfolio of Chief of Protocol in 2010. He said two years later, he was demoted and later appointed as the PS to the office of the former First Lady.