Hon. Lamin Ceesay
Member of Parliament for Kiang West constituency
By Buba Gagigo
The Member of Parliament for Kiang West constituency, Hon. Lamin Ceesay, said the presence of the ECOMIG forces in The Gambia scares foreign investors away from coming to the country. He made that submission during the National Assembly’s debate on the President’s State of the Nation Address.
“Anybody who does economics knows this. Investors fear to come because there is a presence of foreign forces here, because they believe the country is not still stable. We are lacking a lot. So, I think we need to look at the security sector and definitely inform the Gambian people what mechanism we are doing to ensure that we bring back our men and women in uniform,” he said on Monday.
Honourable Ceesay said he is disappointed that the head of state avoided and never address the presence of ECOMIG forces in the country during his State of the Nation Address, last week.
“I think it was so disappointing that the State of the Nation Address could be heard from the President without talking about the presence of the foreign forces (ECOMIG) in this country. What are we doing about that? We have the presence of foreign forces in the country. Are we still at war? Of course, if there is a need, and it is a security issue that they should be in this country that has to be known. What is the rationale behind their presence in this country?” the MP asked.
He implored that country’s security forces should be trained and equipped to handle our national security, and secure our territorial borders, provided that is the reason for ECOMIG’s continued presence in the country.
“If they (national security forces) need to be equipped, and go to school, let us take them to school. Let them learn. Let them learn the proper skills. Let them go through proper training to ensure that our country is in our hands. Our president is protected by foreign forces today. We should all endeavour to ensure that our president is protected by ourselves,” Hon. Ceesay said.
The Kiang West constituency representative said that it is abnormal discussing defence and security of The Gambia without talking about the presence of the foreign forces in the country.
“Is this helping us in the security of the national information? Do we really know? So I think it is abnormal deliberating on the issue of defence and security without talking about the presence of the foreign forces in this country and why they are still present in the country, and what mechanism is the government doing to ensure that we have a proper security reform to ensure that our country is in our own hands?” he said.
The Kiang West National Assembly Member also made mention of the tragic car accident involving personnel of ECOMIG that led to the sudden death of six Gambian youth at Mariama Kunda Junction.