NEWS: Barrow Issues Warning To Golden Lead, Others On Environmental Destruction
The President of The Gambia, Adama Barrow , has issued warning to investors of his government's determination to ensure they respect environmental laws . Golden Lead is involved in litigation at the high court with the community of Gunjur over environmental damage. Speaking at his maiden address to the National Assembly, he stated: "My government will continue to monitor to ensure that existing investors respect the agreed guidelines to protect our environment. In support of environmental protection and tourism in the country, my government has put in place the right policies and programmes to protect our environment and combat the effects of climate change". Further reiterating the earnestness of his vow to protect the environment, Barrow alluded to the move taken by his government which stopped destruction of Bijilo monkey park by investors. He ploughed on: "In our first 100 days, we reversed an executive order of the previous government to destroy the forest park in Bijilo with the construction of a hotel on the park grounds. We have normalised the environmental impact assessment process with clear guidelines in accordance with due process, with full transparency... The Forestry Bill 2017, which seeks to put in place the necessary legal framework for the management of our forest resources, will come to this Assembly shortly for enactment. We shall enforce it rigorously to protect and preserve our already degraded and vulnerable forest cover. This is necessary, not only to preserve our precious natural resources, but also to mitigate against the adverse effects of climate change".
It could be recalled that the Golden Lead Company stand accused of environmental destruction, pollution and lack of respect to the environmental laws of The Gambia, which resulted in the National Environment Agency (NEA) filing a lawsuit against the company. Although efforts are being made to settle that lawsuit in an out of court arrangement, a consortium of Gunjurians both at home and in the diaspora has subsequently filed a civil lawsuit against the same company for damages caused to the ecological resources of the coastline.