By Olimatou Coker
Following preliminary meetings between the Government-assigned interlocutor and the Gambia Market Union officials on Friday and a subsequent discussion with the Interior Minister, Mr Yankuba Sonko on Sunday, the government has issued a statement calling on the Market Union to exercise patience.
“From the onset, The Gambia Government conscious of the financial impact of the Covid-19 virus on the global economy and its crippling effects on local economies, avoided a total lockdown to help mitigate its full effects on our local businesses. Following a cautionary examination of their concerns, the Government recognizes how these unintended consequences may have potentially affected their businesses and is diligently working out new modalities and strategies to accommodate their needs,” government said in a statement.
The statement further reads: “During a meeting chaired by Vice President, Dr Isatou Touray, the Cabinet Sub-Committee on the Covid-19 pandemic, expressed gratitude and appreciation to the Market Union for their thoughtfulness conveyed in their letter of 21st August, 2020 appealing to the Government to relax some of the latest regulations affecting market schedules throughout The Gambia. Vice President Touray and her Cabinet colleagues recognized the plight of the market vendors and how the new Emergency Regulations may have inadvertently affected their businesses.
On the contrary, the new regulations were promulgated into law to help protect and save the entire country from the looming danger of the deadly Covid-19 virus that has been ravaging humanity since November, 2019.
“Therefore, considering that legislative processes are highly procedural, very technical and time-consuming, The Gambia Government asks that The Market Union continues to exercise patience and understanding as their concerns are being considered in the upcoming Regulatory Cycle.’