By Omar Bah
President Adama Barrow has called on Gambians to put aside their political differences and join hands together to develop the country.
Speaking at the inauguration of the USD8 million World Bank, European Union and the European Investment Bank electricity project in Sami, at the start of project sites visits that the opposition said is a disguised political campaign, President Barrow said his opponents should not use their grievances against him to frustrate the country’s development.
“We should not misconstrue working for The Gambia with working for President Barrow. None of you is working for me – you are working for The Gambia and the earlier you realise that the better for all us,” he said.
He said he was destined to be president by God and there is nothing anyone can do about it.
“So, those who want to force themselves to be president should know that no matter how much you want to be president, if God didn’t choose you, it can never happen. We should all try to unite and develop this country. I am calling all Gambians, especially those who make a habit of recording WhatsApp audios to insult me to come onboard and join me to develop this country,” he said.
The electricity project launched on Saturday will benefit 46 communities from Laminkoto to Diabugu Batapa in the districts of Sami and Sandu.
“These are areas that strongly need such public projects and the package includes electricity connection meters provided at the cost of D1000 for 2500 beneficiaries in households, institutional and commercial users or customers. It is safe to state confidently that this is a major project that has come to transform the beneficiary communities and will significantly improve the lives and livelihood of the people who live in those communities. Besides, providing regular electricity supply for them, the facilities will create various opportunities for the people. It will enable the residents of the settlements to process and add value to their agricultural products, facilitate access to quality social services and enhance better living conditions,” he said.
The Gambian leader said the government remains committed towards achieving its 2025 electricity access for all.
“The provision of adequate, reliable, affordable energy service is a requirement for the development of any model economy,” he said.
“Alongside infrastructural development endeavours, understanding and love for the country are also essential and strong values and enablers for rapid development. They foster cooperation, tolerance and joint undertaking for the common good,” the president said. The visits to project sites continue. Meanwhile the opposition United Democratic Party has said the president is wasting tax payers money by campaigning for the local government elections and disguising it as visit to project sites or launchings. ”The timing alone is cheap and would have been a joke had it not come at a colossal cost to the tax payer. With all the many inaugurated incomplete projects littering everywhere who can the president fool? No one should be fooled by this cheap political gimmicks. The strongest message to Barrow to stop all these unseriousness is to massively reject NPP in this elections,” said Tombong Saidy, media and communications head of the UDP.