By Momodou Jawo
The Government of The Gambia on Tuesday validated the National Development Plan (NDP) 2018-2021 at a local hotel in Senegambia.
NDP gives the government of The Gambia the opportunities to articulate its key development priorities, effectively manage its resources and strengthen policy coherence amongst the various sectors of the economy.
Speaking at the validation ceremony, the Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs Amadou Sanneh said the plan is the vehicle through which we seek to define the strategies and actions to address the host of economic and social challenges inherited from the former regime.
The new government, he added, is convinced that ‘business as usual’ in formulating and executing development plans will not deliver the transformative development outcomes we seek for our country and people.
The Finance Minister stated that the NDP has made a good start on this objective by clearly indicating the goals and outcomes envisaged under each priority area and underpinning this by a robust result measurement framework.
“Today’s workshop will be an opportunity to brief you in detail on these transformative strategic priority areas and the corresponding critical enablers. These strategic and measures identified would help spur growth, reduce poverty and inequality, address gender disparities, enhance youth employment and consolidate the gains of democratic transition,” he explained.
For her part, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in The Gambia Ms. Ade Mamonyane Lekoetje said the NDP 2018-2021 has incorporated lessons learnt and is fully aligned to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Africa Agenda 2063 and other global and regional commitments that represent the comprehensive global nexus needed to make development a reality for The Gambia.
As per the plan, she said, restoring good governance, respect for human rights, the rule of law, and empowering citizens through decentralization and local governance is at the heart of the reform agenda. Essential for our new democracy is sustaining peace that The Gambia has enjoyed for decades.
The UN Resident Coordinator stated that the development strategy must be holistic, underlined by the five fundamental Ps of sustainable development, namely focus on people, prosperity, planet, peace and partnerships.
She said the UN system will serve as a catalyst for resource mobilization and along with other development partners, notably the EU and WB will support a donor round table conference on the NDP early next year.
The United Nations System in The Gambia’s Ms. Ade Mamonyane Lekoetje assured her office’s continuous and unflinching commitment to supporting the national planning processes by providing technical, advisory and financial support with the intent to revitalize and transform the economy for the well-being of all Gambians.