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GAMBIA: ABDOULIE JAWO REACTS TO THE OVER D 40 MILLION GOVERNMENT BRIBERY SELECTIVE MEDIA PLATFORMS

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Domination through the Military under Jammeh to Domination through the Treasury under Barrow*

It is the deeds and achievements of a government that promotes a government. It defies common sense that one can preside over increasing poverty and then expect to use wasteful, infantile promotional approaches to gain popularity.

For example, how many boreholes for cooperative production of vegetables and other fruits by the youths or other youth-focused enterprises,l could have been established with the D40 million that the Barrow government is alleged to have allocated to private media houses to promote and propagandise for the Barrow administration.

This is another fraudulent management of the monies of the Gambian people. Finances are not available for most basic things significant to the Gambian people, but money is available for the self-perpetuation of President Barrow in power.

The Nazi government had one of the most sophisticated and effective promotional machinery during its time. That is one of the reasons why the Nazis were able to garner the mass support that they had and were able to do to the world en masse, what they did to the world and Europe in particular. However, no one wants to be associated with the name Nazi today.

While President Jammeh promoted his self-perpetuation in power through the use of the Military to silence and disappear, critics and opponents, The Gambia continues to experience President Barrow promoting his self-perpetuation in power through the use of the Treasury to buy loyalty, silence critics through job offers and to pay for propaganda outputs and outfits to promote his failed government.

*Sadly, both the Military method under President Jammeh and the Treasury approach under President Barrow are using monies of the Gambian people to dominate the Gambian people.*

In short, these are monies that should have been invested into the productive sectors of the Gambian economy to create jobs and generate wealth for the Gambian people.

For example, while The Gambia has 550,000 hectares of arable land, only 57% is under cultivation, according to GONGA (Issue 1/24). This means that while 236,500 hectares of uncultivated land are available for cultivation in The Gambia, The Gambia spends between 2 to 4 billion dalasis to import rice.

GONGA also indicates that in 2020, The Gambia imported 2 billion dalasi worth of cereals, 1.2 billion dalasi worth of animal and vegetable fat, 29 million worth of potatoes, 108 million worth of onions, 93 million dalasi worth of tomato paste, 506 million dalasi of milk and milk products, 1 billion dalasi worth of cooking oil and 88 million dalasi worth of eggs.

Essentially, this means that The Gambia, a country with a largely unemployed and under-employed population, is continuing to create and sustain jobs in other countries and importing further unemployment into The Gambia.

In short, each bag of rice or another item imported into The Gambia creates a job(s) in the country of origin of that bag of rice or that item.

Where that bag of rice or item can be produced in The Gambia, it means such importation, instead of investing into the productive sectors of The Gambia to make such a bag of rice or items, is the importation of unemployment and poverty, while exporting employment and wealth to the country of origin of that bag of rice or item.

Such a situation has increased the trade deficit from 1.4 billion dalasi in 1994 to 24.3 billion dalasi in 2017.

Moreover, the debt burden of over 50 years period has, since 2017, doubled in less than ten years, with virtually nothing for President Barrow in particular and The Gambian people, in general, to show for such a monumental doubling of the debt in less than ten years

It is incontrovertible that such a situation is unsustainable and a deliberate financial contraction and economic suicide for a country. No country can progress with such retrogressive and dependent economic arrangements.

While every country is striving for self-reliance, the Barrow administration is seeking how to reduce the prices of imported goods. Striving to lower prices of goods that one does not produce and has absolutely no control over instead of trying how to make those goods in The Gambia is a childish enterprise in futility. A President with such a simplistic and self-combating economic mindset is not fit to be a president.

Disturbingly, President Barrow brags about infrastructure being his first, second and third priority, meaning job creation, food production, and wealth generation are not even his second or third priorities, as if it is the infrastructure that would immediately bring food to the dining tables of Gambians.

Moreover, if the allocation of D40 million to private media houses in The Gambia is proper for the promotion of and propagandisation of the Barrow administration, then it further shows that President Barrow is pillaging the Gambian Treasury to fund all types of strategies and ploys in his unrelenting stance to self-perpetuate himself in power.

The Barrow government already has a publicly funded mass mouthpiece in the form of the Ministry of Information, which, two days ago, unveiled how it will deploy its role as a government mouthpiece. Yet, President Barrow allegedly allocates D40 million of public monies to pay for more mouthpieces for his failed government.

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