By Aisha Tamba
Governor Samba Bah of the Upper River Region has advised the Tekki-Fii beneficiaries to take businesses seriously and create employment in their region, as the programme is phasing out.
Speaking to the regional closing of the Tekki-Fii in URR, Basse at the dialogue held between Tekki-Fii implement partners and beneficiaries, Governor Bah said so many in his region have benefited from the programme.
“The meaning of Tekki-Fii is ‘you can make it here’ and therefore, if we persist as beneficiaries it means that the slogan will be true. And I pray that other people also take it from you which is the essence of Tekki-fii.
We don’t want the programme to close today and the next moment we don’t see the remains of the programme and we have to start again from square one.”
He said the programme came through efforts of the government of The Gambia to uplift the living standard of the young people. “Sure, we have to thank the government of the Gambia for its open-door policy. In trying to make sure that projects come to this country and benefit the young people in The Gambia most particularly the Upper River Region.
“As a beneficiary, there are things that you have signed up, therefore you are to create employment for the young people of the society. You are the beneficiaries; there are still a lot of people who did not have an opportunity. Therefore, the ball is in your court for you to create that opportunity for young people in this country.
But if everything crumbles today as they close down at the end of the day, it will not be a good manner that would encourage other projects to come into the country.
Your businesses are here to remain. The continuity of your business lies in your hands, what we can do is to give you the opportunity,” he added.
He emphasized that it is important for young people to take this opportunity and harness it to create more employment. “Like I always say, if you are a business enterprise and you open up a business through Tekki-Fii and in the next couple of years you are able to employ 10 people, just imagine after 10 years. If that person also is able to learn from you and open up another entrepreneurship, what do you think is going to happen within 10 years? We are going to see that all the young are employed. We understand that the government of the Gambia cannot do it alone that is why we need the private sector to step in,” he stated.