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Hon. Sanneh Alleges Political Affiliation Determines Ministerial Appointments

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Kebba T. Sanneh, The National Assembly Member for Foni Jarrol 

By Ramatoulie Jawo 

Kebba T. Sanneh, the National Assembly member representing Foni Jarrol, has asserted that ministerial and permanent secretary appointments in The Gambia are influenced more by political affiliations than by merit or expertise.

Sanneh expressed concern over the selection process, emphasizing the need for qualified individuals to hold key positions for the nation’s progress. He criticized the prevailing practice of appointing individuals based on political allegiance rather than their competence, arguing that this approach sidelines capable individuals who may be perceived as political opponents.

“We need serious people to occupy our positions to move this country forward; it should not be about political compensation, and this is what is happening. All the competent people will be moved out or sidelined from their positions because they believe they are opponents. Is it that the opposition did not have the right to work for this country?” he asked.

The National Assembly member commended the Minister of Finance for his budget presentation, acknowledging the inclusion of thorough analyses and references to other countries’ economic models. However, he cautioned that the effectiveness of such budgets ultimately relies on the competence of those responsible for implementation.

“These are just predictions; the budget is just a sample and a guide, but when it comes to implementation, all our expectations will be based on the taxes that we collect, the loans that we are going to take, and the grants that we are going to receive. All these things are going to be managed by people who don’t even know what they are doing,” he said.

Highlighting his concerns, Hon. Sanneh argued that the Gambia is currently heading in the wrong direction due to the appointment of individuals who lack the necessary qualifications and experience for their roles.

“The ministers and directors are appointed based on their political affiliations, not base on their knowledge and experience or that they have ideas of how to implement things. If you give a budget to someone who does not know what a budget deficit is, how do you expect that person to implement that?” he stated.The National Assembly member urged President Barrow to focus on appointing individuals capable of advancing the country, expressing concern that without this change, the nation would continue to witness stagnant parliamentary discussions without tangible improvements.

“This country has no control; if you say it, they will not be happy with you, but there is no control of the economy, no control of work places,” he said. 

Honorable Sanneh delivered these statements during the 2024 budget speech debate at the National Assembly on Monday, December 11, 2023.

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