By Ndey Sowe
Supt. Mamanding S. Dibba, PRO of The Gambia Immigration Department (GID), recently advised Gambians to refrain from helping aliens to get The Gambia’s National Identity Card.
He made this remark at a press briefing which was held at the GID Head office in Banjul, geared to shed light on key issues as well as accord the media the opportunity to seek clarification on matters of concern to Gambians and residents of The Gambia.
He claimed that Gambians are lending a helping hand in getting documents for aliens to apply for the national ID cards, adding that it will affect us some day and the public should refrain from that action.
He said GID started operation with two issuing centres which is the Simlex headquarters in Kanifing and the other one at the GID headquarters in Banjul.
“So far from October 1st 2018 to 31st of May 2019, we have issued 65,251 ID Cards, 2,313 ID cards are pending verification, 89 ID applications have been rejected and currently 194 ID card applications are awaiting interview,” he stated.
Reacting to recent allegations on social media that GID officers are subjecting applicants to ethnic profile, the PRO said they are refuting those allegations in the strongest possible terms saying that the allegations are unfounded and are meant to misinform the population about their role as immigration officers.
“We have a mandate to execute and we owe responsibility to the government and Gambians that we should only issue ID cards to people who are Gambian citizens; and in doing this, we must remain very focused and very committed to what we do. We cannot be just carried away by allegations,” the PRO asserted.
Chief Supt. Ebrima Manneh, officer in charge of The Gambia ID department urged Gambians to jealously safeguard the National Identity card, adding, the ID is only for citizens of The Gambia.
Regarding claims by people who say it takes them weeks or months to get their ID Cards, Chief Superintendent Manneh explained that those making such allegations are usually those asked by the Immigration to provide other documents.