Dear Pa,

I am an employee of GPA.  I read your article regarding the port.  Most of what you wrote is correct but I am not only sure about the $2m part.  In 2015, I saw some Chinese having many meetings with our then management and after sometime I heard they have signed an MOU.  All of us know how the Chinese operate.  They sign MOUs and look for funding base on the MOU, then they will add their margin.  My problems are:

  1. The Chinese are not known as port operators in Africa and they do not respect the environment
  2. The few ports they built in Africa have problems after few years
  3. If they give a loan to the port without operating it, we will be (and Bissau) the only port in West Africa without a private operator.
  4. If an operator is appointed, this can increase the port tariff as there will be three parties with interest; the port, the Chinese and the operator.

My humble advise as a Gambian is to look for a concessionaire before going for a loan.  We will be having the same management who are looking at their interest without having the country at heart.

I forgot to add that presently our MD and our minister are in China.

Written By An Insider

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