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City of Banjul
Wednesday, September 27, 2023

SSHFC MD says leasing of hotels ‘detrimental’



By Baba Sillah

The managing director of Social Security & Housing Finance Corporation, Muhammed Manjang, has described the leasing of the two five-star hotels, Ocean Bay and SunBeach to BPI Investment as “detrimental” to the corporation.
Manjang who is on forced administrative leave from the corporation was testifying before the Janneh Commission yesterday with regard to the leasing of the hotels in 2010.
The veteran banker said the leasing was not a good investment given the disparity between the corporation’s receipts before and after the lease.
Manjang also pointed out that the SSHFC was not receiving rental fees from the investment company on time as indicated in the lease agreement, stating that they wrote to that effect to BPI.

Mr Manjang said 78,000 euros was owed to Ocean Bay from January 2017 to March 2017 while 30,000 dollars was owed to SunBeach.
He said Ocean Bay further owed over 8 million dalasis in unpaid utilities bills while SunBeach owed over 2 million dalasis.

Manjang told the enquiry that they had discussions with BPI to settle their liabilities but were told that their financial situation was so dire that they could not pay 5 million dalasis to Nawec.
Momodou Sabally, former secretary general, in testifying, said he was present when former president Jammeh held discussions with one Nicolai for the leasing of the hotels.

Sabally however said he did not know the details of their discussion but confirmed a letter being sent by Jammeh to the corporation with instructions to lease the hotels.
He testified that he would not know whether his former boss knew there were two offers for the hotels, further stating that it would not be reasonable for the corporation to seek approval from the Office of the President for anything they do.
Sittings continue today.

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