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City of Banjul
Saturday, September 19, 2020

US embassy ‘clarifies’

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He cannot mention a single project that has impacted the lives of ordinary Gambians. We remember in 2011 when the production of food items fell in The Gambia, the US government and its embassy did not contribute a single butut towards the relief efforts even though it was within the powers of their embassy to do so”.

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Believing this constitutes a misrepresentation of facts, the US Embassy countered on its Facebook page: “In the wake of the 2011 drought and 2012 crop failure in The Gambia, in 2012 the US Government donated over $1 million US dollars (40 million dalasis) to Gambian relief efforts. In April and May 2012 the US Government sent a humanitarian assessment team to The Gambia in response to the Government of The Gambia’s ‘Declaration of State of Public Emergency Resulting from Crop Failures and Soaring Food Prices’.  Shortly after on May 8th, then-US Ambassador to The Gambia Pamela White declared an emergency in The Gambia which immediately released US$50,000 that was distributed to villages throughout the country. Days later, Ambassador White briefed President Jammeh on the US’s response to his request for assistance and plans to contribute more aid. 

“Two weeks later, the US Government contributed an additional US$500,000 to address the drought and food security situation in The Gambia. The funds provided seeds and fertiliser to assist in the 2012 harvest. The US Government funds were provided to the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO). FAO, in collaboration with the Gambian Ministry of Agriculture and National Disaster Management Agency, then distributed the seeds – 50 metric tons of maize seeds and 150 metric tons of rice seeds – throughout the country. Later in the year, the US Government gave another US$500,000 to the World Food Programme which provided emergency food aid to additional Gambian communities in need”.

 

By Sainey Darboe

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