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City of Banjul
Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Cement scarcity worsens

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There is increasing frustration among building contractors and individual homeowners over the growing scarcity of cement in the country.
The Standard yesterday visited the Jabang-Jambajelly highway around which massive construction of homes and stores are underway.

A local exporter Alhajie Cessay who was seen consoling his many disappointed customers said he has been inundated with enquiries about cement since two weeks ago when he had to stop importing because of the heavy tax imposed by the government.
Ceesay said the so-called factory owners—who in actual fact have no factory but mere bagging facility—could not meet the demand causing serious scarcity and hike in price.
Buba Colley, who claimed he could not finish his fencing since the scarcity, said government should come to the help of the people and reverse the tax policy on cement to attract competition that will not only bring the price down but more importantly make it available.

A number of petty businesses connected to the cement trade are also affected.
Some transport operators complained they have recorded little service since the new policy on cement came into effect. They called on government to listen to the cries of the majority of the people and not the interest of just a “small group of greedy business people”.

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In Farafenni where The Standard contacted people on the phone, there is a similar story with many people complaining the hike in price and occasional scarcity of cement.
“This policy is making the common man suffer. The president should protect people from exploitation by businessmen who are falsely claiming that they have cement factory, which is not case.

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