By Omar Bah
The leader of the opposition Alliance for Patriotic Reorientation and Construction has refuted Finance Minister’s claims that even the former government used to take some loans without seeking ratification from the National Assembly.
“The Gambia government under the APRC has never taken loan without subjecting it to parliament scrutiny. I challenge Mambury Njie to prove his claims. I was the majority leader of the National Assembly. I swear to God you cannot get a loan from any country or institution without parliamentary ratification. If not, that loan only becomes a loan between that president and the institution. They cannot fool us…Let them tell us where they are putting our money,” Fabakary Tombong Jatta told The Standard.
The National Assembly finance and public accounts committee has questioned the legalities of government taking loans without seeking ratification from parliament.
But Mambury Njie said government doesn’t require the ratification of parliament for Rapid Credit Facility loans, arguing that such has been happening for long and has never been a subject for ratification.
The Finance Minister came under lot of criticism for his comments.
“I want to make it abundantly clear that it cannot happen and has never happened. A loan can only become a government loan when it goes through the National Assembly, otherwise if that government left office it will not be obligatory for the next government to repay,” Jatta said.
FTJ concluded: “The only time a loan is taken as a national loan is when it is ratified by the National Assembly.”