EYEAFRICA TV: Banjul, The Gambia: President Adama Barrow heightened Gambians expectation when the presidency announced Monday that he will be conducting a three-day state visit to the Kingdom of Qatar, starting Monday.
Diplomatic tie between Banjul and Doha have taken a rather congenial direction, with the Asian Arab nation supporting Gambia in various areas. Citizens have been saying that the President’s international trips must not just be mere travels but they must be mutually beneficial to the citizens to justify that they are bringing something for the country.
Gambia is a developing nation that largely depends on support from the international community and ally nations like Qatar, China and Saudi Arabia. The construction of a multi-million dollar conference center that was intended to host the country’s failed bid for the 2019 Organisation of Islamic Corporation (OIC) summit, was funded by the government of China. It is now relying on countries like Qatar for its bid to host the next year OIC summit.
Some two months ago, the Qatari government donated television and other equipment to the national broadcaster, GRTS that was worth over ten million dalasi.
Recently, the government of Saudi Arabia approved a grant and loan to The Gambia, totaling to over ninety million dalasi.
China government and the European Union are two of Barrow government most reliable sponsors of roads and other construction projects.
President Barrow’s frequent travels have also come under criticism by many Gambians, with many calling it a waste of tax payers’ money. The president is said to have conducted more than two dozens of international travels since he came to power in 2016. But State House have once issued a statement on that, saying President Barrow’s international state trips are funded by the visiting states.