Tabling the bill for enactment before the deputies on Tuesday Finance Minister Kebba Touray explained:
“This new Act provides for movable assets such as herds of cattle, jewelry, and valuable antiques to be accepted by financial institutions as collateral .Financial institutions only accept immoveable assets such as land, building, machinery as collateral for extending credit because that is all current law caters for .The objective is to expand opportunities for credit, improve business environment and provide legal basis for financial institutions to accept such assets as collateral.
The Act provides for a register of movable assets at the Central Bank of The Gambia. Under the status quo in The Gambia, financial institutions are reluctant to accept movable assets as security for credit facilities. Thus the objective of the bill is to provide legal framework to facilitate the use of movable property as collateral in order to improve access to credit; to provide for creation, registration and enforcement of security interests in movable property and to establish an electronic movable property security interest registry and registration system.”
Seconding the motion, Hon. Netty Baldeh, member for Tumana constituency said financial institutions are reluctant to accept movable while expressing hope that the bill would address the problem.
“This bill is here to remedy and bridge that gap. Good things are better done late than never. It will enable small farmers to access credit or loan in financial entities. The bill is supporting Vision 2016 endeavors. The national assembly has been crying for introduction of such a bill where access to loan and credit will be a thing of the past.”
Meanwhile, NAMs on the same day also passed The Gambia public Procurement Authority (GPPA) amendment bill 2014.This seeks to, among others, strengthen the Gambia public procurement institutions, improve the efficiency and transparency of the procurement system from a compliance based regime to one based on procurement competence with focus on achieving value for money .
The finance Minister Kebba Touray, who tabled the bill explained: “The reason for the government to embark on procurement reforms is to address conflicts in the current Act which allows GPPA to undertake both prior and post review of procurement process. The amended Act therefore seeks to remove prior review functions of GPPA and place the onus on MDAs and major tender boards to conduct procurement activities. The GPPA’s focus will now be on conducting post review exercises and capacity building for MDAs.
Another reason for embarking on procurement reform is to provide for the right to appeal against procurement decisions by establishing an independent compliant review board (ICRB) comprising representatives from the public sector, the private sector and civil society. Until now complainants had no choice but to resort to the same institutions that make procurement decisions.”
Muscling in on the debate,Majority leader Fabakary Tombong Jatta said given government’s expenditure of millions of dalasi on procurement ,regulating the sector is fundamental.
“The composition of the board should be independent; otherwise it will defeat its purpose of creation. The creation of the independent board will ensure accountability and transparency and the beauty about the bill is that those found wanting will be sanctioned,”he said.]]>