Who is Pa Njie Girigara?
I was Born in Banjul and moved to KMC in 1982. Pa Njie Girigara is a Gambian known in the business field for the past 40-years. I have also participated in helping all political parties of The Gambia from 1977 to date. I contributed a great deal in the diaspora struggle from 2009 to date.
What is your background in politics?
My political background started when I was a student in the US in 1973 and continued back in The Gambia from 1977 to date. For brief background, I helped the late Pap Cheyassin Secka of the NLP in 1977 presidential election. I was also a supporter of Hon. BB Dabo of the PPP. I helped the APRC from 1996 to 2001. I also helped Hon. Hamat Bah of NRP. I helped Lawyer Darboe of UDP in 2011 presidential election and finally Hon. Mamma Kandeh of GDC in 2016 presidential election.
Impressive. So, why do you want to become mayor of KMC?
I was approached by the GDC to run for the KMC mayoral election. Having noticed that democracy needs a vibrant opposition, I decided to put my weight in the political field to help create a balance in our new democratic dispensation. Finally as an enterprise manager with a wealth of experience, I can also apply my managerial skills to transform the KMC into a modern, clean and vibrant and business friendly municipality.
What is your vision for KMC?
My vision is to reduce taxes, rates and duties for residential, market vendors, shops and other businesses. Having taxes reduced, we will ensure tax collections without fear or favor. We will introduce and implement new information technology system in all administrative procedures and processes especially for data collections, tax collections and management reporting systems. We will increase salaries of KMC workers reasonably. In return for the salary increase, we will curb corruption and ensure transparency and honesty in tax collection processes and compliance.
My vision for the KMC is captured in a four-page document to be published in your local newspaper and other papers in the country.
At a time when everyone is eyeing a career in politics, how can people determine you are in fact genuine and capable of bringing development to them?
Let KMC people try me and they will never regret it. I will be the best Mayor they ever had. As a confortable businessman I do not need tax-payers’ monies.
The national youth mobiliser for the GDC claimed recently that you are not a ‘stranger to Gambian politics,’ but not so many Gambians know who you are or your contributions in Gambian politics for that matter
Well if Gambians want to know my political involvement and contributions let them ask Hon. Halifa Sallah, Hon Hamat Bah, Captain Yankuba Touray, Hon. Oussainou Darboe and Hon. Mamma Kandeh. These people can tell them my involvement in Gambian politics.
What words of wisdom do you have for the electorate ahead of the looming May 12 polls?
Do not despair; change is going to come if you elect me your Mayor. I will introduce a real system change in KMC devoid of fake and empty political promises.
What is your political slogan?
KMC for System Change.
With competition for political offices now growing in Gambian politics, do you think your chances are high?
Very high indeed. My legacy speaks for me.
What next for Girigara, if he loses?
Back to my business. As usual.
How will you celebrate?
With humility as the task ahead is enormous. A lot needs to be done.
Any final comments?
The Coalition has the presidency through a UDP member. The house of parliament is dominated by the UDP, it is time the local government seats go to the opposition to avoid another PPP-style dictatorship.
I would like to thank you also, young man, and call on Gambians to vote for system change with Pa Njie Girigara and GDC.