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SSHFC bought GTSC buses for 13 million euros

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By Tabora Bojang

The Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs has disclosed that Social Security and Housing Finance Corporation purchased the new fleet of GTSC buses for 13 million euros.

The vehicles, 38 in July 2022 and 70 in April 2023, are meant to upgrade public transport in The Gambia and the project according to GTSC was pre-funded through a supplier credit arrangement.

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Critics have since alleged that the project is marred by lack of “transparency and improper influences.”

But appearing at the question-and-answer sessions with NAMs yesterday, Seedy Keita revealed the sum involved in the purchasing of the vehicles in response to Brikama South lawmaker Lamin J Sanneh who wanted to know the actual amount of money, contract details, payments, invoices and if any, the approval from the Gambia Public Procurement Authority.

The minister however revealed that the “GTSC is a private limited company that is not required to go through GPPA procurement procedures.”

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Asked if purchasing the buses was a priority for the SSFHC and whether it forms part of their mandate, he said: “GTSC is fully owned by SSHFC; they design their priorities based on their engagement with their subsidiary.”

Minister Keita was also asked how much money the government owed SSHFC, and he replied that it was D521 million. “The government has been honouring these payments until recently. In June 2023 we paid D50 million and there is an outstanding balance of D295 million,” he said.

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