Feyifolu Boroffice, World Bank Resident Representative for The Gambia.
Feyifolu Boroffice, World Bank Resident Representative for The Gambia.

WASHINGTON, November 19, 2021—Today, the World Bank Board approved $50 million additional financing in the form of grants from the International Development Association (IDA) to improve the quality and utilization of essential health services in The Gambia.

In addition to expanding the provision of performance-based financing grants to health facilities from the five rural regions to the entire country, the additional financing will fund the construction and equipment of a national emergency treatment center intensive care unit, emergency observation and treatment center, national public health laboratory and training center, and national blood transfusion center. This additional financing will also support the safe removal of asbestos roofs in selected facilities.

“Since April 2020, the World Bank has provided almost $100 million in grants to support the Government’s long-term efforts toward building a sustainable and comprehensive health care delivery system in The Gambia,” said Ms. Feyi Boroffice, World Bank Resident Representative for The Gambia.

This additional financing will also support the implementation of the National Health Insurance Act that was passed by the National Assembly last week. The project will support capacity building of the proposed National Health Insurance Authority with and establishment of electronic systems for enrollment, provider and beneficiary management, claims processing, and performance-based contracting of health facilities.

“These investments are geared towards ensuring that the poor have access to quality health services and reducing the high maternal mortality ratio and under-five mortality rate.” said Dr. Samuel Mills, the World Bank Task Team Leader for the Project.

The World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA), established in 1960, helps the world’s poorest countries by providing grants and low to zero-interest loans for projects and programs that boost economic growth, reduce poverty, and improve poor people’s lives. IDA is one of the largest sources of assistance for the world’s 74 poorest countries, 39 of which are in Africa. Resources from IDA bring positive change to the 1.3 billion people who live in IDA countries. Since 1960, IDA has provided $458 billion to 114 countries. Annual commitments have averaged about $29 billion over the last three years (FY19-FY21), with about 70 percent going to Africa.

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Mr. Sainey M.K. Marenah is a Prominent Gambian journalist, founding editor The Alkamba Times and formerly head of communications at the Constitutional Review Commission (CRC) and Communications and PR Consultant for The Gambia Pilot Program, under Gamworks. Mr. Marenah served as the Social media Strategist and Editor at Gambia Radio and Television Services. He is also the Banjul Correspondent for Voice of America Radio. Sainey is a human rights and developmental journalist who has carved a strong niche particularly in new media environments in the Gambian media industry. Mr. Marenah began his career as a junior reporter with the Point Newspaper in the Gambia in 2008 and rose through the ranks to become Chief correspondent before moving to The Standard Newspaper also in Banjul as Editorial Assistant and head of News. He is a household name in the Gambia’s media industry having covered some of the most important stories in the former and current government. These include the high profile treason cases including the Trial of Former military chiefs in Banjul in 2009 to 2012. Following his arrest and imprisonment by the former regime of President, Yahya Jammeh in 2014, Marenah moved to Dakar Senegal where he continues to practice Journalism freelancing for various local and international Media organization’s including the BBC, Al-Jazeera, VOA, and ZDF TV in Germany among others. He is the co-Founder of the Banjul Based Media Center for Research and Development; an institution specialized in research and development undertakings. As a journalist and Communication Expert, focused on supporting the Gambia's transitional process, Mr Marenah continues to play a pivotal role in shaping a viable media and communications platform that engages necessary tools and action to increase civic participation and awareness of the needs of transitional governance to strengthen the current move towards democratization. Mr. Marenah has traveled extensively as a professional journalist in both Europe, Africa and United States and attended several local and international media trainings.

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