By: Kebba Ansu Manneh
Commuters using the Kaur-Dankunku Ferry Crossing say the access roads are deplorable, which the local and Ferry Services authorities have failed to address for years.
Sulayman Sawaneh, the chairman of Janjanbureh Area Council (JAC) told TAT that his council needs more financial resources to fix the said roads.
He said that upgrading the access roads will involve enormous financial resources, which only the central government can provide.
“We (the council) don’t have the required resources to make this road because it involves a lot of money, and the council needed more money to embark on such a significant project.
“Of course, we engaged the government on it, and the President has seen the road that stretches from Choya to the riverside, and I’m sure very soon it will be fixed,” the JAC chairman added.
Alasan Keita, a youth activist in the area, told TAT that commuters and vehicles have difficulty boarding the Ferry, especially whenever there is high tide.
He said both banks are constantly inundated with water, making access difficult for commuters and motorists.
He added that the ferry crossing remains a vital lifeline for people in the Central River Region (CRR) South and North; it provides access to markets and clinics.
Keita wants the Janjanbureh Area Council (JAC), Gambia Ferry Services, and the Gambia government to fix the problem.
Momodou Jarra, a businessman and resident of Nianina, also expressed concern about the bad roads to the ferry crossing.
He said the past several weeks have been especially difficult for commuters and motorists, who have to wade through pools of water to get to the Ferry, either from Kaur or coming from Dankunku.
“The government or area council should help fix these roads. We have to cross pools of water to reach the Ferry. He said older people suffer, whereas motorbike and vehicle owners have been known to cancel crossing due to the bad and flooded roads.
“This route is vital to both the people of Niamina and Saloum, but equally so for people of Senegal and Guinea Bissau.
“It also enables women to access health care in Kaur, facilitates trade between Niamina and Saloum, and provides revenue for the government. Unfortunately, we are all losing due to the poor condition of the roads.”