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Thursday, February 22, 2024

Yankuba Darboe, the capacity builder

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By Ansumana Bojang

Ladies and gentlemen, distinguished guests, It is with great honour and privilege that I stand before you today to introduce our esteemed Commissioner General.

In the realm of leadership and public service, few individuals embody the qualities of vision, dedication, and unwavering commitment to excellence as our commissioner general, Yankuba Darboe, does.

As the commissioner general responsible of the Gambia Revenue Authority, overseeing and coordinating the activities of this strategic national organisation, Yankuba Darboe’s role is pivotal in shaping the direction and progress of our country. With his extensive experience, profound expertise, and exceptional leadership skills, our commissioner general, in the person of no other than Mr Yankuba Darboe, has consistently demonstrated an unwavering commitment to upholding the highest standards of professionalism, integrity, and innovation. Throughout his illustrious career, Mr Yankuba Darboe has been a beacon of inspiration, leading by example and fostering a culture of excellence and collaboration.

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He is the driving force behind numerous transformative initiatives that have positively impacted the Gambia Revenue Authority today. Under the guidance of our commissioner general, our organisation has experienced unprecedented growth and achievements. His strategic vision and ability to anticipate emerging trends and challenges have ensured our organisation’s ability to adapt and thrive in an ever-changing landscape.

I was approached by the managing editor of The Standard newspaper to write a piece to be used in the end-of-year special edition of the newspaper which names and celebrates the achievement of the one Gambian who in their estimation, has done the most towards the furtherance of the common good in our republic over the past 12 calendar months.

This piece is a testimonial of the remarkable contribution of our commissioner general, to among other things, the human capital development within our organisation.

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Yankuba Darboe has exemplified exceptional leadership, dedication, and a deep commitment to nurturing and empowering the talented individuals that make up our workforce. In our organisation, the role of Mr Darboe, in human capital development cannot be overstated. It is the driving force behind creating an environment that fosters growth, learning, and innovation. He recognises the unique strengths of each individual and harnesses those strengths to build a cohesive and high-performing team.

As the commissioner general, he has consistently demonstrated a genuine passion for the personal and professional growth of his employees. Through his visionary approach, he has implemented various programmes and initiatives that have helped individuals reach their full potential. He has championed continuous learning and development, providing opportunities for skills building, mentorship, and career advancement.

I can safely say CG Yankuba Darboe has placed human capital development at the core of his leadership. He understands that human capital development is arguably the most important resource for any organisation in today’s dynamic environment. He has fostered an inclusive environment where ideas are valued and everyone feels encouraged to contribute their perspectives. This has led to increased engagement, employee satisfaction, and ultimately, improved organisational performance at the authority. His ability to identify skill gaps and provide targeted training and development opportunities has been invaluable in building a highly skilled and capable workforce.

Today, the Gambia Revenue Authority, under his leadership, can boost of a number of graduates and specialised professionals. Before his appointment, the GRA could only count a few staff with degrees, but today’s trend is different. The Customs Department, which used to be a place for people without degrees, is today home to more than 30 graduates, about 14 of whom have master’s degrees. The Finance Department has almost 8 people who are chartered accountants, making the place very competitive. The Domestic Taxes Department has more than 40 staff with first degrees and almost close to 20 with master’s degrees. And it is the same story at other departments like Human Resources, Legal, Technical Services, and Information Technology. The Commissioner General is therefore a champion of human resources development, and GRA’s performance in all these years is because of his leadership.

The decision by The Standard newspaper to confer on him the prestigious Gambian of The Year Award 2023, is well deserved.

He deserves this and any other award or recognition bestowed on him for his sterling work as the chief revenue collector of the republic. Most, if not all of us who work under or with him will vouchsafe that Yankuba Darboe is an exceptional leader.

His dedication, leadership, and unwavering commitment to empowering his employees have made a lasting impact on our organisation. His efforts have created a legacy of excellence and have set a shining example for future managers in the field of human capital development.

Finally, there is this popular saying quoted from the Chinese philosopher Confucius:  “If your plan is for one year, plant rice; if your plan is for ten years, plant trees; if your plan is for one hundred years, educate children.”

Our commissioner general, Yankuba Darboe, understands and uses this as a guiding philosophy. That is why he is an exceptional administrator.

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