During a visit to the Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs at Quadrangle in Banjul, we received a disturbing news about the broke Gambian dictator Yahya Jammeh harassing his Finance Minister Abdou Colley to help release some funds to him because he (Jammeh) is in dire need of cash. Keep in mind that these funds were recently approved for other national developmental projects, but the greedy and corrupt Yahya Jammeh wants to have his share of the budget no matter what. Mr. Colley is now at the mercy of the dictator. He either meets Jammeh’s financial demands or risked being fired. This is how Jammeh runs his criminal enterprise regime. The Ministry of Finance is an extension of Jammeh’s financial basket to waste. No wonder that’s why the economy has crashed.  The Great Gambian Depression is here to stay. No IMF, or World Bank can fix this mess!

ABDOU COLLEY (2)In a poverty stricken nation with less than three million people, and yet one man calls Yahya Jammeh wants to micromanage every sector of national development in that country; what else do you expect?  A failed state, right…Abdou Colley is just Gambia’s Finance Minister by name. Jammeh runs that Ministry. The amount of money coming out from that Ministry to the State House is unimaginable. Revenues collected by The Gambia Revenue Authority (GRA), Gambi’a Tax Administration are subsequently handed to the dictator for his misplaced priority retrogressive projects.

Speaking to a senior official of the Finance Ministry, the official told the Freedom Newspaper that his boss Abdou Colley is under increase pressure from his dictator brother Yahya Jammeh to deep into the confers of the Ministry and bailout Jammeh’s broke ass.  Sadly, funds given to Jammeh by his planted agents in the respective Ministries are hardly accounted for. No paper trail, no questions asked, or documentation if Jammeh’s emissaries storm any Ministry or Department for cash.  

Banjul2The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has been loaning money to a risky lender like The Gambia. The Firm would be very lucky if the current regime repays the funds it borrowed from the firm because its ability to service loans is next to nil. The new government succeeding Jammeh would be left with the burden to repay the millions that the corrupt dictator and his cohorts have squandered overtime.

The Finance Ministry’s hope to tap funding from Kuwait and Qatar have been dashed. Its only hope now for funding prospects is the African Development Bank (ADB). And we very conversant with the politics taking place at the ADB. Jammeh is using his agents and business conduits to lobby loans for him. But he is finding very hard to convince any reputable financial institution to loan money to his bankrupt regime.

Talking about infrastructure, the Finance Ministry has not been renovated since Jammeh came to power. This the nation’s Financial institution. The offices there are dilapidated. Our reporter was shocked by the poor sanitation at the Ministry. The air conditioners are rusted. Cracks are evident on the building, while some offices leaks water during the rainy season.

The decayed infrastructure in Banjul, should serve as a wake up call to the IMF authorities in Washington DC. If Jammeh is unable to maintain some of the government buildings built by the previous regime, how on earth can he initiate any serious national development project? The government machinery and its structures are completely dysfunctional. Welcome to Jammeh’s failed Gambia!

Banjul3Meanwhile, according to IMF: “Directors agreed that bold action on a variety of fronts, including targeted structural reforms, is urgently needed to restore policy credibility, rebuild policy buffers, re-engage development partners and achieve The Gambia’s poverty alleviation goals. Directors stressed that an ambitious and sustained fiscal adjustment is necessary to bring the fiscal situation under control. They encouraged the authorities to implement the measures in the current budget and to identify soon additional measures for a deep budget restructuring beginning in 2016. Such an adjustment will create space for development spending while fostering macroeconomic stability and social progress over the medium term,” the IMF statement noted.

“Directors also highlighted the need to articulate a strategy to overhaul public enterprises in the energy and telecommunication sectors to stem their demand on budget resources.”

According to IMF “Directors welcomed the Central Bank of The Gambia’s continued efforts to shore up financial stability. They commended steps underway to improve bank supervision and crisis management capacity. Directors observed that the flexible exchange rate regime had served The Gambia well, and agreed that the exchange directive currently in force to limit exchange rate flexibility should be rescinded immediately.”

“Directors welcomed The Gambia’s significant social gains over the past years but noted that there remains ample room to enhance inclusive growth and competitiveness. They encouraged the authorities to step up agricultural reforms and improve infrastructure in energy and transport to enhance economic diversification and resilience to shocks,” the IMF statement concluded.

Join The Conversation