EYEAFRICA TV: Banjul, The Gambia: Security units on the coastline in collaboration with the Gambia Fishing Association have instituted a registry to keep track of all fishing boats with a view to prevent entry of foreign fishermen as well as other passenger boats into the country.
The idea initiated by the Gambia Immigration Department allows the Gambia Navy to intercept any boat that is not registered to ply on the Gambian waters.
President of the Gambia Fishing Association Foday Jack told Eye Africa Good Morning Programme that the initiative includes restricting Gambian fishing boats to their various landing points such as Gunjur, Kartong and Tanji. The same message was extended to the Senegalese fishermen.
“We met with the Gambia Immigration Department, and The Gambia Navy units in Tanje and agreed to have all boats registered such that each boat will give detail of the number of people onboard before embarking on a fishing trip and the same number will have to be verified upon their return”, says Mr Jack.
As of Thursday evening, a fishing boat believed to have sailed from Mbourr in Senegal was intercepted by the Navy post in Tanji and its captain together with those on board are referred to the Gambia Immigration Department for possible quarantine by the ministry of health. The Navy post in Tanje confirmed the arrest on the sailors who defied orders of the border closure.
Meanwhile, The Gambia Armed Forces has declared COVID-19 as an enemy with an operational order given for each unit of the army to chase the virus by all means.
Public Relation Officer of The Gambia Armed Forces (GAF), Major Lamin Sanyang told Eyeafrica on Thursday that the operation dubbed, Crack nut will position the army on military boots to ensure a Gambia free from Coronavirus.
“Tasks have been assigned to each of the services towards the enforcement of the state of emergency: what the National Army has to do, what the Republican National Guards has to do and what the Gambia Navy has to do under the Operation Crack-Knot”, he said.
“COVID-19 has been declared as enemy by the Gambia Armed Forces and we are going all out to hunt down this enemy. We are tasked to ensure that we work hand in hand with the ministry of health and other sister security units to help in getting people suspected of the virus to be quarantine.”
The total number of coronavirus cases confirmed in the Gambia as of updates from the Ministry of Health stood at four, two recoveries and one death. One case is currently receiving treatment under government facilities.
Neighbouring Senegal records fifteen new cases and fourteen recoveries as of Friday, bringing the total number of infections to two hundred and sixty-five out of which one hundred and thirty-seven have recovered. With two deaths, one hundred and twenty-five are currently under treatment.