Pa, following the explosive story about the new Dalasi notes in Freedom over the weekend, I feel compelled to bring to your attention the same thing happening with our ID cards.
Recently, the Permanent Secretary of the Interior Ministry Nai Ceesay announced in Foroyaa (http://www.foroyaa.gm/archives/8807 ) that they have awarded a contract to a company called Der Shadow. Nai Ceesay who is a holdout from the Jawara regime failed to mention that they had awarded this contract without any tender process to a company controlled by a Pakistani. This Pakistani guy called Raja is in business partnership with Rafi Diab who is a brother to Geoffrey Bala Gaye a son of the ex-Finance Minister Bala Gaye. This Bala Gaye was the same chap exposed by Freedom when they were selling Gambian passports in Brussels. Ousman Sonko the minister is behind of all of this.
Right now as we speak, Gambian IDs are being printed in room at the Interior Ministry and not at Immigration anymore. The Gambian Immigration Department is no longer in charge of printing IDs. Can you imagine a Pakistani is now in charge of printing our most sacred national documents? The corruption at the Interior Ministry is out of control. But because of the total collapse of the Jammeh regime, this outrage is no longer a strange thing.
Right now, the whole of the ECOWAS states are going biometric whilst Gambia is now going back to printing low quality laminated cards when there are Gambians who are able to print biometric cards but they are being denied the chance to do so because of a few corrupt officials in the Interior Ministry
The sad fact now is that the other governments are not accepting these poor quality cards as they look like forgeries. Travelers at the Senegal border are being turned away and being requested to get the biometric ID by Senegalese authorities.
The other sad thing is that Gambians are paying for these cards but most times are not being given receipts. Even where they are given receipts, they are hand-written receipts and the funds go into the pockets of corrupt officials instead of the government coffers. The GRA is also not accounting for the funds collected from the sale of ID cards.
At a time when all the ECOWAS governments are increasing security to fight against the Jihadists, the regional officers are noting that Gambia is the only country weakening the security of its national documents. The thinking is that this is all to make it easy for Jammeh to sell the Gambian ID cards to foreigners especially terrorists who are running from justice. This is why the other countries are refusing to accept these laminated cards. Remember that Yaya has been selling the Gambian Alien Cards to Hong Kong residents for over 10 years now and he has made a lot of money from selling Gambian documents to foreigners. This is the major reason why we now find a Pakistani guy running the Gambian ID card project. We need to rise up and take back our country from this criminal regime that has no interest in country and is just there to line up their pockets.
Written By Gambia’s Deep Throat