Understandably, some are concerned about the potential impact of a state of emergency on many poor families who may go hungry due to restricted measures. In response, I recommend government’s direct intervention.
National Assembly may convene an emergency session to pass a Stimulus Act that will contain financial relief package of 500million Dalasi for 100,000 Gambian families most in need across the country. This is approximately two weeks of revenue generated by GRA, to assuage the impact of any potential restrictive regime.
When we limit people’s movements and severely curtail their daily income generation for subsistence existence, the State must innovate creative solutions to alleviate consequent hardship. Five thousand Dalasis each to 100,000 families would substantially mitigate human suffering arising out of the effects of low economic productivity. This is unprecedented in our history.
I refuse to accept that government could render itself incapacitated from rescuing its citizens at such critical times. There is always something we can do to lighten the onerous burden experienced by poor families.
If I were President Barrow, I would expeditiously constitute a smart team to quickly work on such a practical idea. It is not just the right thing to do under current exigencies, poor families deserve relief.
By Mai Ahmad Fatty