By Arfang. M. S. Camara
Coordinator of Citizen Alliance (CA) party Crisis Relief Fund, has urged Finance Minister Mamburay Njie explain to Gambians how they have spent the D143 million and how the government intends to spent the rest of the D500 million money.
Speaking at the launch of the Citizens Alliance Crisis Relief Fund at Paradise Suites hotel on Thursday, Dr. Ismaila Ceesay asked the finance Minister to explain without delay, if the government wants to instill public confidence in its spending of public finance.
“We commend government for providing 500 million dalasi to fight covid-19. However, we are concerned that no coherent strategy was unveiled as to how the money will be spent,” he said.
He said finance Minister’s recent statement that 143 million has already been spent was done without proper accounting, saying that is a cause for concern.
“In spending this money, we urge the government to consider the Economic support for Gambians badly affected by the pandemic, and those in the diaspora. Those in the diaspora have been forgotten and their welfare must be protected by the Gambia government. We have Gambians in Italy, Spain and France. These are hard hit countries with no access to financial support by those countries because of their status.”
According to him, the government must without delay conduct a census to know how many Gambians are affected in the country so that they can provide the necessary support.
“The government must put a robust preparedness response in place towards the worst. The WHO recently stated that the next epicenter of the virus will be in Africa. We must be ready for this by investing in training medical personnel and providing the necessary equipment such as testing machines and ventilators.”