Saturday, April 1

Hon. Barrow asks Sport Minister Badjie to resign over wife’s per-diem scandal

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The National Assembly Member (NAM) for Kombo South Constituency of the West Coast Region (WCR), Hon. Kebba K. Barrow, has called for the resignation of Bakary Badjie, the country’s minister for Youth and Sports over his wife’s per-diem scandal.
According to Hon. Barrow, since Cabinet did not act on this matter, Minister Badjie should honourably resign.

Minister Badjie recently faced heavy criticism within and outside the country with many calling for his resignation, and others suggesting the police interrogate him after a leaked memo from his ministry authorised the payment of per-diem to his wife for the recently concluded Commonwealth and Islamic games in the UK and Turkey went viral.

After heavy criticism among Gambians especially online, the Sports Minister confirmed that his wife was denied a UK entry visa and did not attend the Commonwealth games. However, Madame Hawa Badjie still received the per-diem despite her failure to attend Commonwealth games in the UK.

Meanwhile, the sports Minister also claimed that he has since returned the per-diem that was paid to his wife.

The Kombo South legislator in a Monday parliamentary debate on President Adama Barrow’s State of the Nation Address, said: “Security personnel in Kombo South are encountering some difficulties among which is the lack of vehicles for them to go on patrol with the desire of ensuring that inhabitants of Kombo South are safe. Security personnel patrolling the area will go a long way in addressing crimes and other issues within the area,” he added.

K.K. Barrow, as he is widely called, thus urged cabinet ministers to be present at the National Assembly especially during NAM’s debate, adding: “This will enable the minister to hear from us as people representatives and equally, it will help them adjust in their respective ministries.”

The NAM for Kiang West Constituency, Lamin Ceesay, expressed disappointment with the country’s health ministry especially on the issue of the new birth and health certificate and insurance scheme.

Ceesay added: “This parliament has allocated billions of dalasis to the Health Ministry. Therefore, as citizens, we need to know how that money was spent. We have few hospitals in our rural Gambia and yet there is no improvement. The Ministry of Health should tell us how they spend the budget that was allocated to them,” he posited.

The country’s education sector, Hon. Ceesay added should critically be looked into, saying: “The Gambia continues to register failures after every examination.”

The Kiang West lawmaker suggested The Gambia College is scrutinised with the desire of ensuring that they enrol the right people who can provide quality education to the students.

“This will go a long way in ensuring that country’s education sector is greatly improved,” he stated, while further claiming that priority should be given to Gambians when it comes to scholarship.

“We have so many students who dropped out of schools due to the fact that they can’t afford the tuition fees. We should desist from prioritising the minister’s children and other high profiles when it comes to awarding of scholarships. The taxpayers should be considered first,” he suggested.

Gibril Mballow, the NAM for Lower Fulladou West said: “Numerous expenditures in the agricultural sector have been made, but yet it is not reflecting on the farms or produce especially in the rural Gambia where farming is centered.”