By Omar Bah
Business owners within the Greater Banjul Area have expressed worry over the recent state of security in the country and called on government to do more to address the situation.
Gambia is currently faced with numerous security challenges ranging from armed robbery and murder which have increased over the past few months, a trend that has left many Gambians worried about the country’s future security.
Speaking to The Standard recently on the issue, Mamadou Salifu Jallow, a Guinean and business owner in Serekunda, said he is worried not for only his business but his life as well.
“I have to admit to you that I am very worried about my life and the lives of my family. If I am at work I would be thinking about my family back home whether something bad would happen to them in my absence,” he stated.
He said he and many like him decided to operate businesses in the Gambia because of the peace and security that the country enjoyed over the past years.
“We want to call on President Barrow to redouble his efforts towards addressing the scarcity of security in the country. Yes, many will say, Yahya Jammeh was a bad president, but during his time Gambians were safe; that is fact,” he said.
Sulayman Njie, also a shopkeeper in Serekunda said the rate at which crime is increasing in the country is quite alarming and worrying.
“Theft, murder and rape seem to have become the order of the day. It is quite baffling that in spite of the security measures taken up by the government, there appears to be no respite,” he said.
He said the shocking part of it is the fact that these crimes are being committed in broad daylight, “Particularly robbery. The citizens and businesses are not safe anymore.”
The fear within the business sector from both Gambian and foreign own businesses is overwhelming, “Frankly speaking many business owners especially non-Gambians are worried and some are even thinking of not ordering goods.”
“As a country trying to embrace democracy after 22 years of atrocities, Gambia needs better security measures and the President Barrow administration must know better,” he said.
Meanwhile, Bamba Dibbasey, who calls himself a concern Gambian, said: “My opinion is that the interior minister should consider crucial and well populated locations. He should have 24 hours Para-military checkpoints and patrols. This will serve as a threat to criminals.”
“Stubborn criminals and repeated law breakers should be seriously dealt with that will set precedence for others,” he concluded.