Opinion: Gambia’s Dangote: Putting His Mouth in Government Policy Making

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Dear Pa,

Recently, we have witnessed a determined business tycoon trying to justify the motivation for those in the private sector to make huge profits. No one is denying that businesses are run to be profitable if they have to grow and expand. However, there should be some humanitarian considerations when making business decisions. And please don’t tell me about operating a good number of self-serving foundations or displaying magnanimity in putting aside huge sums on CSRs. Putting profits before people is commercially unsustainable!

Success for businesses should not be based on the language you speak, the tribes you employ or whether you are Banjulian, Bandibunka, Jarranka or Fula. So it is foolhardy thinking that appointing a diverse cross section of our society in any business is the answer to our tribal division. One thing though most businessmen prefer having their siblings or relatives manning key positions in their businesses.

Why they do that is anybody’s guess. But the operations of most commercial companies in the private sector are shrouded in secrecy. Preserving those confidential business information is of paramount importance. Hence, appointing family members or close friends take precedence over any other employment considerations. Discretional employment does not create sustainable employment.

Finally, dishing out sub-contracts to firms in the building industry can not be termed employment creation. Because once the projects end those contracts stop. What our Dangote should do for us is to invest heavily in building factories and manufacturing companies if he wants to create sustainable employment. By the way companies in the real estate business do not generally make a good candidate in stock markets around the world. So long as our new real estate industry is yet to be completely regulated, it remains fragile and dangerously risky for investors.

Good to have a Dangote in the Gambia, he could do us a great favor if he reduces the loud talking.

AConcerned Citizen

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