President Adama Barrow called on IMF to consider in its advisory, the difficult economic situation impacting the lives of the poor citizens, as the economy recovers post-COVID-19.
The President made the remarks on Tuesday, 4th October 2022, when the International Monetary Fund Mission Chief, Mr. Ivohasina Fizara Razafimaheta, paid a courtesy call on him at the State House in Banjul.
At the end of a closed-door meeting, the IMF Mission Chief said his team briefed the President on the conclusions of the 5th Review Mission of the Government's Programme, supported by the IMF under the Extended Credit Facilities arrangements. He added that they discussed the economic developments in the first six months of the year and the Government's policy direction for the next six to twelve months.
Speaking to the media on inflation, Mr. Razarfiaheta contextualised the inflation and price hikes in The Gambia, saying the inflation witnessed by the Gambia is one driven by external factors like the war in Ukraine, which is affecting global fuel and food prices. "Is an inflation being seen in many countries around the world, not only in The Gambia", He noted.
While acknowledging the Government's efforts to relieve the hardship that higher prices of commodities are inflicting on the population, the IMF Mission Chief said they are advising Government on steps to contain the increase of inflation and the foreign exchange the country is facing. He added that they would consult with the Central Bank of The Gambia on policy options to address the economic situation.
Despite the floods that marred this year's rainy season and the weak performance, the IMF Mission Chief's assessment of the Gambian economy activities found that, even though tourist arrivals have not yet reached pre-pandemic levels, there are an increasing number of tourists arriving, a thriving construction industry, and an anticipated bumper harvest in 2022.
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The President H.E Adama Barrow wrapped up his Meet the People Tour in the Upper River Region with a meeting in Koli Bantang in Wuli West, which was also attended by constituents from Wuli East and Sandu.Issues surrounding agriculture, road infrastructure, electricity and horticulture dominated the agenda with speakers calling on government to increase investments to help local communities. The Lady councillor Fatoumata Saho led the chorus, commending the President for the numerous developments that have transformed the region. The youth representative Yorro Camara and Fansainey Barrow called for more government support to enhance agricultural production in the region, arguing that the URR has the potential to produce enough to meet the needs of the people. As the prices of basic foodstuff increases beyond the reach of ordinary people, Fansainey Barrow called for a radical shift to boost local production. Mbemba Jabbi also appealed to government to revise the tariff at the Samba Juma bridge as the toll is deemed too high for local drivers, and commuters who now use boats to cross the river.Chief Momodou Bah of Wuli West expressed gratitude to the President for what he called his commendable response to current coat of living crisis, which he attributed to external factors, urging Gambians to turn these challenges into opportunities.The Governor of the Upper River Region Samba Bah said his region has seen unprecedented developments under President Barrow, urging people to nurture the prevailing peace and stability. The Governor said several rural communities in the region have benefitted from the NAFAA cash transfer initiative designed to reduce poverty amongst farmers, whilst also revealing plans to construct a regional hospital in Giroba Kunda.The Minister of Works, Construction and Infrastructure Ebrima Sillah said the next five years will be momentous for the URR as studies have already been completed for the construction of half a dozen feeder roads across the region. He road projects, the Minister added will be funded from the national budget in line with the President's development agenda which priorities infrastructure as the engine of economic growth. The Minister of Regional Government and Lands Abba Sanyang expressed concern with the indiscriminate dumping of waste in public places, adding that government is exploring possibilities of re-introducing the monthly cleansing exercises across the country. The Lands Minister also urged local communities to resolve land related disputes peacefully, as these conflicts could upend the existing peace and stability in the country.The President H.E Adama Barrow closed the meeting, commending the people of Wuli and Sandu for the impressive turnout. The President harped on the importance of dialogue in fostering understanding amongst people, describing the tour ad an important platform for exchange of views on national development. The President said his government has laid a robust foundation for socio-economic and infrastructural development, adding that the next five years will usher in more opportunities for citizens. With the groundnut trade season beginning on December 1st, President Barrow announced that government has increased the price of a ton from D28000 to D3200, to help farmers. Speaking about the current economic situation, President Barrow blamed the covid19 pandemic for disrupting supply chains across the world leading to a rise in prices of basic commodities, but reassured that government has taken adequate steps to stabilise prices. Responding to appeals for more electricity access, President Barrow revealed that more than 200 villages will get electricity in URR.The President also addressed concerns raised by some speakers about the recent introduction of a toll at the Samba Juma bridge, saying the fee is justified to enable government raise funds for the upkeep of the bridge. The construction of the bridge, President Barrow added has made life easier for residents as it is safer, quicker and cheaper compared to the boats. He therefore advised communities to take ownership of the bridge and shun detractors who are bent on inciting people against the government, using social media as part of a wider political campaign. The President concluded by reassuring people that the funds generated will be used for development purposes to serve the welfare of Gambians.The tour continues in the CRR with planned meetings in Jarreng and Bansang.
Gambia’s Coastal zones particularly areas in the country’s coastal south are endowed with immense natural resources shaping multiple livelihood ventures for communities and people from all over the sub region. Ecological resources especially those in the country’s vast marine ecosystems are Critical to the population with a viable natural landscape emerging as a major focus for a sustainable blue economy agenda.Kartong is, one of the busiest coastal vicinities with a stable ecological attraction, a bustling eco tourism hub and fisheries centre perfectly placed to nurture the economic environment of the coast.Settled on a narrow strip of land, kartong’s riverside is a robust economic vicinity attracting an appealing variety of ventures., most men and women here are in the fisheries business.Fisherfolk trading different products are making ends meet from massive catches, and a chunk of the supplies are bought by women merchants in the fish business.The coastal area offers a variety of opportunities for employment and, some young men make a profit from the knitting of fishnets while readymade nets are sold to fisherfolk.Women are in the fish-smoking business, they get their fish supplies from fish trawlers and process products into smoked fish and salted dried fish which form a major part of the national diet.Women constitute a high percentage of the fish business in kartong but sometimes sales are less lucrative and women are usually left with little or no alternatives when business hits rock bottom.Fish products processed here are supplied to various fish markets or sold to women who come here to buy stocks for domestic meals.The lack of facilities amid other challenges is massively hindering the output of their business ventures as these women solely rely on fisheries to make ends meet.Women like Isatou Madeline Jarjue are engrossed in the oyster business, she and other women are making a sustainable living from the venture.This could be a dangerous venture. The sharp oyster cells have caused injuries for many women and high tides have also caused countless disasters. But some visionary projects are providing support for Isatou and her colleagues.Apart from the fish business, Eco-tourism is rapidly growing on this side of the river, the coastal zone has an incredible natural landscape giving business opportunities for tourism enthusiasts.Dodou Saidy has an established restaurant, functioning on a narrow strip of land attracting local and international visitors.The kartong halain area is rapidly growing into people’s favorite eco tourism vicinity with sumptuous seafood delights served to customers.Dodou’s restaurant attracts tourists who often visit to enjoy a serene environment and enjoy local dishes and the owner relies on catches from the river for his business but high prices and little quantity of stocks often challenge his business.Sulayman Bojang is in the cruising business guiding tourists during boat rides.The industry is taking off as kartong turns into a major tourist hotspot.The coastal residents rely on natural resources for food and income and a preserved marine ecology means more opportunities for the communiry which is keenly protecting its resources.
President Adama Barrow has promised to construct more roads and bring electricity to communities in Tumana, kantora, Basse and Jimara constituencies by 2025. This he said will cover over 95 percent of the communities in the area. He made the promise at meetings in Chamoi in the Tumana District and his home town of Makamang Kunda in Jimara in response to numerous requests for more roads and electricity. President Barrow returned Gratitude to the people for renewing his mandate as president. He highlighted numerous developments made by his administration in education, health, agriculture and infrastructure amongst other sectors of the economy. President Barrow added that over 45 communities in Tumana and over 30 communities in kantora as well as dozens of others in Basse and Jimara constituencies will be electrified by 2025. The Gambian Leader called on the people to embrace agriculture particularly rice production for food and nutrition security. This he said is the best way to ensure food self sufficiency amid global economic crisis. President Barrow disclosed that his government had secured funds to invest in agricultural inputs and the purchase of groundnuts. He assured farmers that there will no credit buying of their nuts this season. In addition to the distribution of cereal and vegetable seeds his government he added will construct several gardens in some communities in the Upper River Region.The president also handed over a cheque for over 1.7 million dalasi to the women earmarked for 18 women groups in Tumana and Kantora as part of the government funded women enterprise fund meant to improve women's economic status. As he embarked on his nationwide tour the President held his first ever meeting in his home town of Makamang kunda where was received by a large crowd. At various meetings, community leaders, youth and women representatives took turns to return gratitude to the President and his government for what they described as unprecedented socio-economic and infrastructural development in their respective areas. This they say include the construction of roads, bridges, schools, health facilities and improved access to electricity in rural communities. They however appealed for more feeder roads, water projects, agricultural inputs, youth empowerment and improve security among other developments.The Minister of Fisheries and water Resources Musa Drammeh disclosed that government is set to construct over twenty-eight boreholes in Upper River Region by the end of 2023. The Minister of Agriculture Demba Sabally said government will soon start the construction of a dairy plant in Basse, and small ruminants markets and abattoirs in major settlements across the Upper River Region. The Minister of Lands and Regional Government Sheriff Abba Sanyang called on Gambians to nurture peace stability and Social cohesion. Minister Sanyang warned against the abuse of natural resources such as land and forests and called on loacal authorities to ensure their protection. The tour continues with meetings in wuli and other parts of Central River Region.
President Adama Barrow says his government will construct the road at Makkah Farafenni. The President made these remarks at well attended rally at Makkah Farafenni as part of his countrywide tour. He also promised to bring electricity in the area and reiterated that the harsh economic situation is as a result of global crisis. President Barrow said he will continue to work for the Gambian people even after leaving office. He told farmers that the groundnut trade season this year would be a pleasant one as the buying price has been increased by four thousand dalasis. He therefore urged farmers to sell their nuts to the Gambia government.He reminded farmers that government had subsidised fertilisers to make it easy for farmers. The President disclosed that development partners such as the world Bank would provide funds for the purchase of fertiliser for the coming farming season. He therefore encouraged farmers to increase rice cultivation to enable the country to feed itself. President Barrow also said his government is taking over the just concluded Tekki fee project and said the aim is to create employment for young people.He decried the lack of interest in vocational training institutes as unfortunate. He sighted the President's International Award training centre in Kerewan where he said the centre is struggling to attract students.
President Adama Barrow has said that the harsh economic conditions in the country were as a result of global economic crisis. The President made these remarks at meeting at Ndugu kebbeh as he embark on a nationwide tour. He said his government is working hard in trying to alleviate the situation. The President said his government has procured food items which were now being sold at a reduced price. He expressed gratitude to the people who recognised his government's efforts in developing the country. He told farmers that the buying price of groundnuts has been increased this year and urged farmers to sell their nuts to the Gambia. The president told the gathering that his visit was not a political campaign but to dialogue with the people.
Gambia as fashion houses move to embrace Islamic style trends.Part of the youth wave driving style trends, Modest fashion is tremendously evolving in the local fashion industry, with the first ever runway event showcasing latest hijabi designs featuring Islamic dress modes and modest fashion enthusiasts.Pioneered by young Fatima Muloshi and her modest modeling agency specialized in promoting hijabi fashion to diversify the runaway.Making it a cultural appeal and unifying platform, organisers aim to broaden Islam fashion to dispel stereotypes.The exquisite display of unique fashion pieces gives the modest niche show infinite power in the growing fashion market.The rare stage affair was graced by modest fashion influencers like Fatoumatta Ceesay, widely called Fatisha, uses online platforms to showcase her love for modest fashion.The runway is also creating a spotlight for modest apparel designers to exhibit their brands, giving them exposure to a new economic opportunity.For these young ladies, blending a little fashion in modest clothing is an opportunity to reclaim feminity. The trend is hugely altering stereotypical understanding of Muslim apparels and showpiece for all identities.Events like this underscore the new dawn in fashion industry embracing diversity and despite the hitches, the modeling agency is persistent in putting Islamic fashion on the spotlight
President Adama Barrow will on Monday set off for nationwide tour across the country. The twenty one day tour will give the President the opportunity to meet with locals and discuss issues affecting national development. President Barrow will hold hold rallys and visit numerous project sites to assess progress and challenges.
His Excellency, President Adama Barrow, on Friday presided over the closure of the Tekki Fii Programme and launching of the National Employment Policy and Action Plan, 2022-2026.The President said, “The two events have a bearing on each other, with the Policy providing long-term solutions to the challenges that the TEKKI FII intervention sought to address in the short term. In view of the positive results of the TEKKI FII Programme, it is with a deep sense of accomplishment and much optimism for the future that I join you here in person.There is no doubt that we have made important gains since 2017, and the results of the Tekki Fii Programme clearly manifest this. The stories and results associated with it are indeed inspiring. Among other things, they give us renewed hope and strengthen our faith in the youth and the nation”.
It is that time of the year when almost everyone is grabbing a slice of watermelon as the fruit season takes on a fresh bloom bringing record supplies of watermelon in markets across the country. Farmers are enjoying massive bumper yields with fruit harvests beating most crops as markets welcome fresh produce.Watermelon is a highly cultivated fruit worldwide, the green fruit with a delightfully juicy taste, is from the Cucurbitaceae family, which produces nutrient loaded plants with many health benefits.As in other west African countries, watermelon is a profitable agribusiness venture in the Gambia, with businessmen and women cultivating massive productions delivering bumper supplies across the metropolis where established selling points are churning significant profits everyday.After a successful harvest season, the fruit is transported from farms to wholesale and retail dealers in all parts of the city. The fruit however comes with a rather short life span that makes it difficult to keep fresh produce for a long spell after harvesting. Without a ready made market, the fruit gets spoiled within a short duration but others have techniques to keep it fresh.Also making ends meet from the watermelon business are wheelbarrow watermelon sellers, trading juicy slices for pedestrian passerby’s.Watermelon Vendor Alfusainey Jallow has been in the watermelon business for years, he told us that the business has not been stable due to adverse variations of water prices. But attractive slices are still pulling customers despite the high price.After a grueling day at work, Omar Cham and his friends gather at Westfield to buy watermelon slices from Alfusainey to quench their craving and unwind.For most consumers its crucial to eat the fruit regularly before the season ends, as the chance to witness a bumper watermelon sales that happen once a year. On a hot afternoon, eating fruit with high water content keeps the body hydrated, according to experts watermelon is one of the fruits lowest in calories.The fruit is 92 percent water and rich in potassium and vitamins C, A, B and many other nutrients that blend to make the fruit a vital resource for beverages and smoothies.The Gambia’s shores are endowed with immense natural resources and watermelon makes significant yields despite environmental challenges.
The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) has announced that the commission elections of ward Councillors will take place in April, and polls for chairpersons/mayors will be held in May 2023.120 seats for ward councillors will be up for grabs while 8 local Government chairpersons/mayors positions will be available for contests. The announcement was made by the IEC chairman Alieu Momar Njie at the IEC-stakeholders consultative forum and the launch of activities leading to the local government elections at the Sir Dawda Kairaba Jawara International Conference Centre on Wednesday.He said the IEC is currently implementing the activities of the electoral cycle of 2021 to 2023, and the conduct of local Government elections is key to the electoral activities.He said legal requirements were reasons for the scheduling of different dates for the councillors and chairperson/mayoral elections.