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Saturday, September 23, 2023

Agreement on transportation


Transport operators in the Gambia have raised concerns urging that the two governments – that of the Gambia and Senegal – should make efforts to ensure that authorities fulfill all points agreed upon and signed between the two countries. Transportation is one of the areas in which the cooperation of the two peoples and states should be manifested.

It has been reported that in recent times, the nation’s transport union has raised serious concerns about the attitude of the Senegalese Transport Union, complaining that they habitually violate some of the points of the agreement by preventing Gambian vehicles from entering Senegal. 

It could be recalled that a few years ago, the Senegalese Transport Union closed the border in Karang stopping Gambian transports from going further than that. There was a time in fact, when the Gambian authorities responded in like manner. This caused a lot of trouble for some people who ply that road doing business between the two countries.

Analysts have long expressed the desire for the relationship between Ecowas countries, especially the Gambia and Senegal, to be that of the citizens at large rather than just that of the states. This is more beneficial considering the close relationship between the two people who share language, culture and norms.

Therefore, if the two countries commit themselves to fulfilling all Ecowas protocols, it will be a significant step in integrating. In this manner, their efforts at implementing the agreements will be accelerated rapidly. This will bring a lot of economic and political benefits to both countries and everyone will be a winner.

The Gambia Transport Union has expressed delight at the renewed energy observed in both governments concerning these agreements and protocols. It is reported that both governments showed true commitment to implementing all the agreements and this is highly welcome. The next step is to take it beyond rhetoric and take practical steps to ensure that it materialises for the benefit of all.

The leaders of the two countries have shown real commitment to integrate the citizens of the countries. What is needed now is for that commitment to filter down to all government agencies and officials in order not to frustrate the good intentions of the leaders. It is important that the citizens of the countries take ownership of these agreements and move it forward.

Even a cursory glance at the history and nature of the two peoples – Senegalese and Gambians – will show that it is only colonialism that separated them. It will be foolhardy to allow such an anomaly to stand in the way of integrating and doing everything possible for the prosperity of the people. 

We all must work together to see that the artificial borders and barriers do not stand in the way of our progress. One area that we can all use to cement the ties between the two people is trade and commerce which are oiled by transportation.

This must be given due consideration!

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