By Kebba Jeffang
Madam Fatoumatta Jallow Tambajang has finally taken her oath of office and secrecy on November 9th, following her appointment in September, which ended the country and government without having a Vice President for more than eight months.
She was first appointed in January which brought about a lot of controversy regarding her age as she was alleged to have exceeded 65 years as prescribed by the Constitution. Her appointment was later rescinded. Since then she has served as the Overseer of the Office of the Vice-President until mid-September, following the National Assembly’s amendment of the upper age limit in the statutory book.
Mrs. Jallow Tambajang took the three oaths of secrecy, execution and allegiance, before penning down her signature in the oath book. The ceremony was held at Fajara, graced by the President, senior government officials and foreign ambassadors and UN officials.
Addressing the gathering, Gambian President Adama Barrow described the occasion a long journey, while reflecting on the story of the fight to bring peace, democracy and the rule of law in the Gambia. He said when very few believed that there is a chance to win, contributions by stakeholders including the Vice President made it successful.
“Clearly, Madame Fatoumatta Jallow Tambajang is no stranger to this portfolio of Vice President as she has efficiently held the position in an overseeing capacity since March, this year. Mrs. Fatoumatta Tambajang Jallow is a strong professional woman of sound character and integrity, with a verse wealth of experience. She has brought to the cabinet a wide range of skills highly required for social construction and rebuilding of economy, after years of divisive rule and mismanagement by the former government,” he said. Barrow asserted his confidence that Tambajang will fulfill her assigned role to support the presidency.
For her part, the Vice-President Fatoumatta Jallow Tambajang said the democratic process has matured in The Gambia and they are committed to nurturing it further. She said the country has faced enormous challenges after two solid decades of bad governance of the former dictatorial regime of former president Yahya Jammeh which she said, they fought and conquered in a democratic way.
“Gambian women are working towards gender parity. My signing here today is a confirmation that women will continue to be part of your Excellency’s Government. Therefore, my aspiration for this nation is to provide all the required support to you Your Excellency Adama Barrow, for you to realize your national development objective,” she said.
She assured that Gambians in the public and private sector are working hard to support Government in achieving its vision in peace, unity, private sector-led inclusive growth, sustainable development by 2021, within the frame work of your national blue print.
“The main economic drivers shall be coming to answer the consequence needs and aspirations of our people, an efficient and accountable civil service, a people centered decentralization that strategises the empowerment of all communities to take charge of their narratives, a country-wide improved transport and infrastructure to facilitate communications, an efficient an accountable women and youth empowerment programmes to close the unemployment gap and gender, an efficient year-round tourism sector for employment creation and growth, a modernized and vibrant agricultural sector for employment, growth and expectation of value added produce,” said the VP.