Dear Pa,

I trust all is well and I would like to commend you for all the diligent work that you are doing for our country especially with the transparency that you are bringing to the country.

I have a great concern with the way certain matters are being handled especially within the Tender process in the Gambia and how certain individuals are being favoured.

My biggest concern is how Momodou Sowe, ex Referee seems to manipulate certain ministries to gain Tenders to his favour by bribing and corrupting certain officials.

Last year, he placed a bid for the tender involving the Number plates that was initially won by another bidder that had a perfect set of documents and an even cheaper price. Modou Sowe allegedly bribed the ex PS Nai and other key players to cancel the tender on a silly technicality. The tender was then reissued and then he won with an even less competent set of tender documents. This is outrageous as it seems that Gambia no longer respects the bidding process.

I was under the impression that it’s the best person and the best price that is supposed to win, but in the Gambia that does not seem to be the case. I however have to commend the new Minister, Mai Fatty and his PS for taking firm ground against Mr Sowe and his alleged corrupt ways. Modou Sowe attempted to bribe PS Dibba for a mediocre sum of 20,000 dalasis, which PS Dibba immediately rejected and filed a complaint. As of date, Momodou Sowe is no longer allowed to visit the premises.

The department that concerns me the most is Education. A recent tender for Islamic books which was supposed to be funded by the IDB was cancelled after numerous suitable applicants had applied including Momodou Sowe. He allegedly paid a few individuals a large sum of money to cancel the tender. But what perplexes me is how does Momodou Sowe, have the contract to print the Islamic curriculum books, when he no longer operates a working press and the tender was cancelled without going through due process.

I urge the ministry of Education to look into this urgently and understand exactly what went on. There are numerous companies that can do a better job that were not given a chance. Per, the IDB funding document, 11million dollars was awarded to education, of which 6.9million was to go to the Curriculum budget but only 200k usd is being used to pay for the Islamic books which amount to nearly 1 million copies. This does not add up… what is going on???

So far, there has been couple of tenders that have been done in the same way, NAWEC FOR THE FUEL, EDUCATION FOR THE ISLAMIC TEXT BOOKS AND INTERIOR FOR THE NUMBER PLATES. 

IT’S SAD TO KNOW THAT THE PEOPLE WHO ARE ENTRUSTED TO OVERSEE THE FUND FROM DONOR TO OUR PEOPLE ARE THE VERY ONES USING THE FUND WITH SELFISH BUSINESSMEN TO ENRICH THEMSELVES.  WE MUST KNOW THAT IF THE DONORS ARE AWARE OF THE UNSCRUPULOS DEALING, WE WILL LOOSE ALL THE FINANCING EXPECTED FROM THEM. 

I am tired of corruption and Gambian citizens getting poor quality products due to corrupt civil servants lining their pockets. Pa, lets speak out.

Written By A Concerned Gambian

Editors note:  The views expressed in this write up are sorely that of the author. Modou Sowe, could not be reached for comment.

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