In my humble capacity as president of the Gambia Commercial Transport Union, I deemed it pertinent to raise the following issues as a concerned citizen. This is with a view to calling the attention of KMC for consideration and implementation of my concerns if feasible.
As a point of departure, I wish to seize this opportunity to congratulate the honorable Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs for his brilliant budget speech delivered recently. It is indeed remarkable given the difficult situation surrounding the global economy.
Having said that, it is a well-known fact in this country, since the APRC took over the reigns of government, that either within the budget or in its wake people would expect some increase on salaries and wages. This is perhaps natural, on account of these difficulties, there is for most workers or members of the working class who, short of engaging themselves in some additional jobs or works, would find it difficult to make ends meet. We do hope that fare is not going to be increase for that will worsen the situation.
Furthermore, I am particularly concerned about the lack of car parks (popularly known as “garages”) in the urban areas. This is affecting not only the drivers and the general public but even the police on traffic duties are also affected. Taking a scenario of a civil servant from, for example, Sukuta to Banjul, he pays transport from Sukuta to Tippa Garage, Tippa Garage to Serekunda and Serekunda to Banjul ending up paying three times to reach to Banjul. These are some of the issues that need to be urgently addressed by the council. The average member of the working class cannot make ends meet under such circumstances.
The situation is as a result of lack of adequate car parks or garages to accommodate all types of commercial vehicles plying within the towns and cities. The need for a central car park in the urban cosmopolitan area cannot be overemphasised given the criticality of the situation. Customers and passengers are encountering difficulties in locating passenger vehicles that move between their various locations for want of a centralised vehicles park like what obtains in other countries.
In this regard, I would like to urge KMC to consider constructing parks in the urban area to ease the difficulties of drivers and pedestrians are facing. The beautification and regeneration of roads and construction of more markets according to the mayor of KMC are not top priorities and some of the markets are underutilised. The buffer zone could be an ideal area for this purpose to ease the burden of traffic congestion and lack of Vehicles Park in the municipality. This is a priority project which will generate good revenue and will be more cost effective and will mean providing the desired social service to the urban community as a whole. Therefore, I want to urge and encourage KMC to give this matter the urgent attention it deserves in the best interest of all and sundry.
Finally, I would like to seize this opportunity on behalf of my union, to thank His Excellency Sheikh Professor Dr Alh Yahya AJJ Jammeh in providing Gambians with a fleet of buses. The initiative is highly appreciated by one and all irrespective of party affiliation. The buses in no small measure have eased the difficulties commuters encounter especially during feast periods.
Alh Ebou C Faal
Commercial Transport Union]]>