The Managing Director of Gambia Tourism Board has told journalists on Friday at the institution’s head office that they have not exonerated EJ Investments as part of estate companies that are selling lands in the Tourism Development Area.
According to Gambian laws, 800 meters from seashore across the country’s coastline is reserved as Tourism Development Area (TDA).
The land in the TDA can only be allocated to a particular investor by the GT Board.
However, the institution has recently issued a statement mentioning three estate companies that they say are selling lands within the TDA.
Among these are EJ Investment and Darboe Jula. But on Wednesday, local newspapers published reports quoting the director general of the GT Board Abdoulie Hydara as saying that EJ’s land in Sanyang is not within the TDA.
Hydara claimed on Friday that he was misquoted. He said they have communicated to the estate companies affected and each of them knows which of their lands are within the TDA.
Hydara said they are currently giving dialogue a chance but they are also exploring their legal options since the TDA is established by law.
He also informed journalists of their plans to build signboards within the TDA so that people will be clearly informed of the demarcation lines.
Meanwhile, Hydara has also informed journalists of efforts that are ongoing to return several lands leased to former president Yahya Jammeh and his businesses within the TDA without following due process.
Jammeh and his Kanilai Family Farm business have leased to themselves 34% of the entire coastline, said Hydara.
“We are very hopeful that the Janneh Commission recommendation to the Ministry of Justice or to the Executive is to revert this land to the Government,” said Hydara.