By Adama Tine
Kanifing Municipal Council (KMC), in collaboration with the Federal Republic of Germany, through the leadership of the German Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development, Dr. Gerd Muller last Thursday launched a two year project worth 580,000 Euros. The launch was held at the Bakoteh Dumpsite.
The project consists of different components such as the construction of two access roads, three fire hydrants, an open shed, two toilet blocks and the installation of 30 solar lights of the BMZ Bakoteh Dumpsite Project.
The program also availed the Minister the opportunity to hand over to the KMC two quad bikes, 30 fire extinguishers, and tree planting materials for the green zone of the project.
He also saw the planting of 500 seedlings for the project’s green zone.
In his speech, the Mayor of the Kanifing Municipal Council, Talib Ahmed Bensouda, said Dr. Gerd Muller’s visit to The Gambia demonstrate the strong partnership that has been established between Germany and The Gambia. He stated that the Bakoteh dumpsite is the largest solid waste management in The Gambia, adding that his council has made significant investment in the management of the dumpsite.
Mayor Bensouda added that the council has constructed a fence at the dumpsite which is over 3.5 meters tall and measuring 1.7 km funded by the council. He said the partnership has supported over 1000 children from 200 families in the communities of Bakoteh, Dippa Kunda and Manjai Kunda. He reassured the council’s commitment to fully utilize and maintain resources in sustainable waste management.
According to Dr. Gerd Muller, it is now time for change and people needed to help and protect the children’s future. He said Germany is supporting KMC to improve children’s living conditions as well as adults living around the Bakoteh dumpsite.
“My message for the Gambia is that the future of children and their education must be first priority in the country,” Dr. Gerd Muller said.
Benoit Poit, regional director for the SOS Children’s Village described the project as significant to the community, saying pollution affects both children and adults.
“Today is a remarkable day for us to stand and protect the future of the children,” he added.
He said the project will help mitigate challenges children and adults are faced with near the Bakoteh dumpsite.