It was the 7th Annual General Meeting (AGM) of GAMWORK which gathered a good number of congress delegates across the country.
Chairman, Board of Directors, GAMWORKS, Mr. Mustapha Njai says “ I am pleased to report that 2010 was another momentous year for GAMWORKS in terms of Board Governance and performance of its oversight functions, and Management's achievements in delivering successfully completed projects and Delegated Management Contracts to the satisfaction of our clients, including the state of the art newly reconstructed Westfield to Sukuta Road.”
According to him, management, with support of the Board, has also been successful in brining in new projects and contracts into the Agency citing the US $18 million Community- based Infrastructure and Livelihood Improvement Project.
In this regard, he said it is gratifying to note that the government of The Gambia continues to manifest soaring confidence in GAMWORKS, with the number of sectors working with the Agency increasing and more Delegated Management Contracts being signed.
He stated that in October 2010, the IDB approved the financing of the community-based infrastructure and livelihood improvement project (CILIP) saying that the project is to last for a 4 year period. He continued, “Under the Ministry for Local Government and Lands, GAMWORKS is responsible for the implementation, and day to day administration of the project.”
Elaborating further, Njai explained that the project will have a significant impact in improving the infrastructure and economic assets of beneficiary communities and in alleviating poverty in rural and peri-urban areas.
On collaboration, he assured collaborators and partners that GAMWORKS will continue working and partnering with them in implementing their signed project, of such partners, he cited the Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education, Ministry of Defense, University of The Gambia, and GAMTEL saying that with the partners, GAMWORKS continues to grow from strength to strength.
On the international, he reported that GAMWORKS have strengthened their collaboration with the Islamic Development Bank and the International Cooperation and Development Fund of The Republic of China (Taiwan).
Also presenting his report was the Director General GAMWORKS, Mr. Ebrima Cham, who also informed members that GAMWORKS performance was still exceptional, as it delivered a number of successfully completed projects and contracts, despite the many challenges and constraints they faced by the Agency.
According to him, a number of markets have been built for local authorities throughout the country, which will provide commercial outlets for the women's gardens produce, whilst earning revenue for the councils.
Meanwhile, the previously dilapidated Westfield to Sukuta Road has been transformed into an ultra modern highway adding that another significant highlight of the year is the completion of the GAMWORKS headquarters. On financial front, DG Cham revealed that the agency received inflows of funds amounting to D208 million, of this, payment s to contractors totaled to D153 million, D8 million to the consultants and another D8 million was paid to other service providers.
DG Cham also informed the meeting that a number of markets have been built for local authorities throughout the country, which in turn, will provide commercial outlets for women horticulturalists whilst earning revenue for the councils.
Mr. Cham explained that during the last 12 months, three projects and ten delegated Management contracts (DMCs) were under implementation under the agency as part of the third public works project, noting that this comprises three components namely civil works, capacity building and support to the project implementation unit (GAMWORKS).
He disclosed that the Third Public Works Project was financed by the government of the Gambia from a US$ 4 million loan provided by the OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) stating that additional financing was provided by contributions from government and sub-project beneficiaries by way of counterpart funds and that gives a total project cost of US $ 5.1 million.
The loan agreement which was signed on 5th September 2007 and the project that was declared effective on 10th December 2007 have been successfully completed, he said in happy mood.
Still on the projects, DG Cham said the reconstruction of West Field to Sukuta Road Project totaled to the tune of US $ 10.66 million which was financed by the Islamic Development Bank and The Gambia government. The third project, also said is the Gambia community-based infrastructure and livelihood improvement project (CILIP) saying that The Gambia government received a loan of US $ 15.86 million and a technical assistance grant of US $ 400,000 equivalent from the Islamic Development Bank.
He said the government by way of counterpart contributions provided additional finance of US $ 880,000 while local councils and sub-projects beneficiaries provided US $ 880,000 giving a total of US $ 18.02 million.
The Agency, he said on 1st September, 2009, GAMWORKS signed an implementation agreement with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Ministry of Trade, Regional Integration and Employment (MoTIE) to execute the Labour Intensive Technologies and the Waste Management components of the Gambia Priority Employment PROJECT (GAMWORKS) at a tune of D8.971 million.
Again, 16th September, 2009, GAMWORKS signed a DMC with the National Training Authority (NTA) for the construction of a Technical and Vocational Skills Training Centre in Ndemban VILLAGE, West Coast Region, amounting to US $2.83 million as part of he Gambia Government/ Taiwanese Government funded Technical and Vocational Education (TVET) project. The facility, he reported that will have classroom blocks, workshops, multi-purpose hall and offices for staff adding that all facilities will be furnished and equipped as part of the DMC
The Gambia Revenue Authority (GRA) engaged the services of GAMWORKS for the rehabilitation of seven warehouses amounting to D10.5 million, and the seven warehouses are adjacent to the Authority' headquarters in Banjul and a DMC was signed between GRA and GAMWORKS on 28th September.
Following a request received from the Office of The Ombudsman, Cham said that his agency prepared and submitted an Assessment Report with Coast Estimates of D2.04 million for the rehabilitation of the office at Cape Point. The Ombudsman went on to engage the services of the agency to implement the rehabilitation works by signing a DMC on 4th December, 2009.
Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education (MoBSE), Education For All- Fast Track Initiative Catalytic Fund (World Bank/IDA), D86.438 million, Fabrication and Supply of Furniture to Lower Basic Schools (IDB), d26.766 million, GAMTEL; Rehabilitation and Upgrading of GAMTEL Facilities Nationwide- Phrase one at a tune of D14 million, GAMTEL; Gambia ACE submarine Cable Station D47 million, University of The Gambia- Enhancement of the Resource Centre at MDI D3 million, and Construction of Military Outposts amounting to D71 million were all signed agreements with GAMWORKS and the respective institutions.
The biggest challenges faced by the management, Cham revealed, is the mobilization of resources to fund the operations of GAMWORKS, noting that the agency does not receive any direct subventions from the government budget; GAMWORKS relies entirely on management fees and project implementation support, to sustain their operations.