By Omar Bah
Following the controversy surrounding the government’s decision to use the Senegambia Bridge in a recycling agreement with Africa50, the People’s Progressive Party leader, Kebba Jallow, has expressed disappointment over the government’s handling of the matter.
Speaking on the issue in a Star FM exclusive to be aired today, Mr Jallow described the government’s lack of information sharing and lack of proper communication strategy as unfortunate.
He said communication is always an emergency for the government.
“They always allow people to speculate before they come out to address it. Just look at the case of the AKI; they were quiet until people started talking about it.
“I think the recycling agreement is a good deal, but unfortunately, communication is a problem for this government. I don’t know much about the whole thing, but based on what I’ve heard so far, the agreement was signed months ago. What stops them from informing the Gambian people about it?” he asked.
He said if the government had handled the issue properly and transparently, the majority of well-meaning Gambians would have supported the idea of receiving $100 million upfront for an asset to reinvest in infrastructural development.
“But they could not offer simple communication,” he noted.
Jallow said he supports the government’s decision to sign the recycling agreement.
“I will even advise them to use the money on infrastructural development. I would even urge them to focus on roads in Serekunda and the West Coast Region. I am sure there are many countries that would want to enter into such arrangements, but they don’t have such assets,” Jallow said.
He said the government should make sure that the $100 million is expended judiciously.
“We expect them to be transparent and accountable,” he said.
Talking about the PPP, Jallow said the former ruling party is working on putting up a presidential candidate in 2026.
The party has not put up a presidential candidate since 1992, when Sir Dawda Jawara won a sixth term in office, but he was toppled in 1994.
“We have received a lot of requests from different political parties for us to enter into a coalition, but we have made it clear that we want to focus on building the party. We want to focus on rebranding the party, and it has a lot of young and vibrant youths who are capable of leading it,” he said.
Jallow said the PPP will have to consider a lot of factors before entering any coalition agreement in the future, given their bad experience with President Barrow.
He said if the NPP wants to work with the PPP again, it cannot be like the present arrangement.
“We cannot support President Barrow and allow him to take everything. That is not possible,” he said.