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Sunday, June 16, 2024
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What with the corruption?

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It is becoming a daily occurrence to read about massive corruption in one government department or the other. Every other day the media reveals corruption allegations which further weaken the trust between the State and the population. Many people in this country are fast losing their trust in government and its officials.

There were allegations of corruption at the Gambia Ports Authority and recently similar damning allegations were leveled against the top brass at the Edward Francis Small Teaching Hospital. A war of words between the Chairman of the Board and the Deputy CMD was reported in the media recently. These two traded corruption allegations against each other.

It could also be recalled that the municipal and area councils have been battling similar allegations recently. Commissions of inquiry have been set up to probe the activities of these councils and many a time, some of them have been found wanting in the area of financial management.

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Although corruption anywhere is wrong and worrying, its presence in the major sectors is more problematic. These institutions deal, literally, with issues of life and death. As such, any hint of corruption in those institutions should be taken very seriously and quick and thorough investigations conducted.

If these investigations reveal actual misconduct, then there should be swift and deterring punishment such that no one will dare commit such offences thereafter. Accountability is a prerequisite for good governance which in turn is the key to maintaining peace and prosperity in society.

The government of the Gambia therefore, through its various agencies, should take every necessary measure to ensure that corruption is curbed. Otherwise, it risks tearing apart the very fabric of the society and jeopardize the peace and tranquility the country is known for.

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The State must work to restore the trust of the public in these and all other institutions if progress is to be made. If the people, who pay tax, do not have the confidence that their taxes will be put to good use, then it will affect the revenue collection as no one wants to see their money being wasted.

Corruption is a cancer which must be dealt with decisively.

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