Tuesday, June 6

Bensouda launches new manifesto ahead of mayoral election

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The lunching was attended by leader of the UDP, top brass of UDP, rep of National Unity Party (NUP), Gambia Action Party (GAP), People Alliance Party (PAP) and Gambia Democratic Congress (GDC).

In his launching statement at a local hotel on Saturday, Mr Bensouda gave a synopsis of his developmental aspiration for the Kanifing Municipality in the next five years, saying he wants to focus on improving the KM waste management programme, launch 23 KM road network; housing programme; municipal transport; establish public information; building modern markets among others.

 “Our manifesto is people centred. Councils are created to bring grassroots development. So, we want to focus on areas that improve the living standard of our people,” he affirmed.

Speaking further, he said improving waste management was one of his priorities when he came to power simply because there were lots of refuse in several abandoned homes, markets, river areas and streets. However, he added that aspect has been fixed and now wants to focus on other areas of development.

However, Bensouda revealed that road construction is one of his top priorities for KM in the next five years.

“At the top of our list in the coming five years is road infrastructure. Based on survey we have done with our residents and based on feed backs we have gotten from ward councillors, poor road network is the biggest complaint in the municipality. Therefore, before the end of the first term, we had initiated the Kanifing Municipal Road Project (KMRP) worth more than three hundred million dalasis. We will construct 23KM road and six KM water drainage network in the municipality,” he said.

The road project, he said will be constructed across the municipality with modern road signals and speed ramps to ensure road safety.

He said under his leadership the council has planned to bring waste cycling project that would process about 80% of the waste collected and added KMC will support small entrepreneurs to build waste management and processing businesses.

“We will also construct a new weigh bridge so that we will weigh to know the amount of tonnage of waste that enters the dump site daily. We will solicit funds from businesses that specialise in waste management around the world to bring a transfer station and recycling facility at the Bakoteh Dump site,” he added.

On Housing

Mr Bensouda said the population of KM is growing rapidly leading to high rental rates without proper regulatory mechanism from government. However, he revealed that KMC has planned to initiate an affordable housing programme that would target the vulnerable people.

“We have begun setting up a company that will build several thousand new homes in the next ten years,” he affirmed.

On Employment

Moving forward in his manifesto, Bensouda said the council has planned to build seven modern markets with day cares centres in the municipality to provide an enabling environment for women and young traders.

“The council has already identified places where to build such markets,” he said, adding “Any project that the council initiates, there would be youth focus to ensure their empowerment.”

Municipal Transport 

On Municipal transport, he said in the next five years the council would provide an affordable and accessible urban transport system that would cater for both the differently able and elderly.

On public information

In this sector, Bensouda said, there are plans to establish a public information office with a legal branch that would offer free legal service; guide and counsel people how to access services from public institutions.

Thus, he urged residents of KM to give him a second mandate to ensure he completes his projects as well bring more development to their doorsteps.