By MUHAMMED SAILU BAH
The Banjul City Council (BCC), in collaboration with stakeholders from the police, drivers and transport union, has proposed for the establishment of a taskforce to help in regulating the big lorries coming into the capital of Banjul with the view to addressing traffic congestion and obstruction.
According to officials, this is the second time that BCC is holding such a meeting with the stakeholders within two weeks.
At the meeting held in the BCC Chambers on Friday, 21 August, 2015
Mr. Abdoulie Bah, the Mayor of Banjul, said the lorries that are coming to take goods and services from Banjul will be parking around the former Radio Syd while the ones going to the Gambia Ports Authority (GPA) will be using the allocated land at Bond Road for the mean time until a standard garage is finally constructed for the purpose.
Mayor Bah said the City Council will be assigning its engineers to the respective sites for them to survey the places and determine what is necessary to put in place, such as toilets and water facilities.
For his part, Mustapha Bachilly, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), BCC, commended the stakeholders for their commitment in ensuring that this becomes a success. He noted that all the stakeholders have a role to play in this issue.
The BCC CEO lamented the difficulties posed to the city by the lorries parking on the main roads, particularly in Banjul South, as well as the pollution of the environment with the smoke they emit which disturbs and affects the health of the residents in the neighbourhood.
Mr. Sandigie Njie, BCC Public Relation Officer (PRO), reiterated the concerns raised by the previous speakers.
All the stakeholders present at the meeting embraced the initiative unveiled by BCC.
Mr. Katim Touray, a BCC official, said his team will be going to the identified places to do further assessment.
In their contributions, the stakeholders present at the meeting embraced the initiative of the Council in identifying a place outside of the residential areas for the lorries.
ASP Ismaila Sallah from the Banjul Traffic Department announced that his office will be issuing a form for the drivers of lorries to enable them to enter the city from their identified parking spots. He said the forms will be given out to limited number or vehicles from 10 to 15.
Ma Lamin Sankarreh, Deputy Commissioner of Police, for his part, indicated that the police are a complimentary body and that it is the duty and responsibility of the transport union to emphasise the registration and monitoring of the lorries.
Jarrga Faal, Vice President of the National Transport Control Association, assured their commitment, adding that this kind of meeting with the city council is the first of its kind.