By Ramatoulie Jawo
Parliamentarians have adopted, with amendments, the report on the anti-corruption bill 2019 done by the Finance and Public Accounts Committee (FPAC).
Prior to the adoption yesterday, the FPAC tabled the report for consideration by the plenary of the first ordinary session of the National Assembly in the 2022 legislative year.
In his intervention, Hon. Sedia Jatta, Vice Chairperson of the committee, while tabling the report said during the process, the committee did extensive consultation with relevant stakeholders and referred to the AU convention and prevention and combating corruption, among others.
He added that during consultations with the stakeholders and internal deliberation, FPAC scrutinised each of the provisions and made recommendations.
Hon. Sainey Touray who seconded the motion, said the bill is a concern to so many Gambians because corruption in Africa is just too much; especially in The Gambia.
He added that the country needs strong laws to be able to end it, otherwise ‘it will be like a cancer in our system’.
Nominate member Hon. Ndey Yassin Secka said the bill needs more sensitization so that the public would know what exactly is in it because it is for them.
“The government should put in a lot of effort, if they want us to get rid of corruption in the country by increasing the salaries. So that our men and women in the offices will not get into any corrupt business,” she suggested.
Hon. Ousman Sillah, NAM for Banjul South said the fines recommended by the select committee are ‘very heavy’ and urged a revisit of them.
“Considering the salaries in the Gambia and most of the people who are said to be corrupt are the people holding our public offices, and we all know the little salary they receive; so the committee should look at the fines again, to make it a fair game for all,” he argued.