Monday, March 28, 2011

President Jammeh urges Gambians to set aside differences

......And step up national development
President Jammeh (pix by The Point)
The Gambian leader, Yahya Jammeh has called on Gambians to put their differences aside and joined him in the interest of national development, saying sentiments and personal conflicts of interest at all levels of society only contribute division thereby preventing or slowing down success.
“I exhort you to set aside all differences and, as compatriots, come together in the interest of all. Let us be bound together by our national interests, vision and goals, by  the resolve to succeed in reaching  the common destiny  that envisions an economic super power  that we will bequeath to our children and grandchildren yet unborn.
Attaining this is feasible, and, together, we can make our dream of making The Gambia the best and most prosperous nation in the 21st century and beyond, a superpower of peace and economic prosperity a reality,” he outlined.

President Jammeh made this remarks at the opening of the 2011 first Legislative Session of the National Assembly in Banjul on Friday March 25, 2011.
“We can not have a foreign policy, we need to work together, we can maintain our divergent views and when it is time for politics, we can go to our various parties and  after the election, we need to come to together and work in the interest of the country,” President Jammeh said.
The theme of the ceremony was “The achievement of the MDGs and Vision 2020 - a Collective Responsibility” and President Jammeh said the choice of this theme is in recognition of the fact that as the deadline for both the MDGs and the country’s own national Vision 2020 is drawing closer by day.
State opening of parliament is usually a colourful ceremony in Gambia
It is urgent that all Gambians, at home and abroad, young and old, become more determined in their resolve to mobilize a more committed, strong, and unified populace that would ensure that development goals and targets that the governments have, be achieved in record time.
He stated: “The theme is also in recognition of the fact that achieving the MDGs and Vision 2020 goals is not the end, but a means of salvaging the citizenry of our Motherland from the ravages of poverty, underdevelopment, disease and ignorance.” 
As a nation, he said Gambians have every reason to be proud of their achievements, but certainly no reason at all to rest in their laurels and become complacent in the onerous task of nation-building, which he called a “continuous and relentless” process.
According to him, all the assessment reports conducted within and independently by others on the Gambia’s status on achieving the MDGs suggest that despite the many challenges that confront the country, significant progress has been achieved in virtually all sectors of the Gambian economy, including the critical social sectors of education and health.
He pointed out that since the advent of the 2nd Republic; his government has been able to implement many projects that have brought beneficial social and economic transformation to the people of the county.
He also noted that the Gambian economy has been growing appreciably despite the recent turbulent times when the overall global economic climate has not been friendly particularly to developing counties.
He revealed that GDP growth figures for 2010 indicate a strong 5.5 percent economic growth rate and that from all indicators it would be maintained in 2011.
He further said despite the global economic downturn and political unrest in North Africa and the Middle East, which continue to affect oil prices across the world, the Gambia’s economy continues to showed stability, thanks to prudent macroeconomic policies that will help maintained a stable economic growth in 2011 and beyond.
Jammeh, who spoke at length, said in line with the liberalized economic policies geared towards enhancing trade and investment, a new Trade Policy Action Plan (2011-2015) is being currently developed, with special focus on integrating trade into the overall national development planning framework.
He said in September 2010, the Gambia successfully concluded the second round Trade Policy Review, which gave the WTO member countries the opportunity to examine and evaluate the trade and trade related policies towards ensuring adherence to rules, discipline, and commitments made under the Multilateral Trade Agreements.
“Independency is an inescapable reality of life, survival in the 21st Century can only be assured by each individual’s ability to be as independent as possible or to be self-reliant,” he said.
“Agriculture is the sector that has the greatest potential to provide employment for hundreds of thousand of people across all works of life in the country and the government is bent on eradicating involuntary poverty and this sector is the key towards achieving the goals of eradicating poverty.” Source - The Voice

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