By Kaddy Jawo
Mayor Rohey Lowe of Banjul has responded to criticisms from the National Assembly select committee on local government which accused her of prioritizing a meeting of the Constitutional Review Commission over appearing in the assembly to answer questions about the BCC reports.
The Select Committee chairman Musa Amul Nyassi, the National Assembly Member for Foni Kansala had told journalists that the Mayor decided to attend the CRC transitional justice meeting instead of coming to the National Assembly for scrutiny.
The select committee said they are disappointed after reviewing the Banjul City Council activity report and financial statement describing it as “scanty” and “skeletal” in nature.
“A three-year activity report does not even entail a ten page document and worst of all, the information on the documents cannot be read and understood,” the committee had said.
Last night The Standard contacted the mayor to explain her absence from the house and she began by stating that the letter from the Assembly was addressed to the CEO and did not specifically state that the Mayor has to be in attendance.
“Secondly it coincided with the CRC meeting and so we divided ourselves since both are important national matters and it was only by coincidence that I went to the CRC while the CEO and others went to the Assembly. When I was contacted that the Assembly wanted my presence the CRC meeting was already climaxing with the speech of the chairman from whom I begged permission to rush to the Assembly,” Mayor Lowe said. She added that when she arrived at the Assembly she was told the select committee had closed until a further date. The Banjul Mayor said she is very willing and ready to go to the Assembly and her absence was not planned or intended.
“We are barely in office for three months and in the business of running the city, we have nothing to hide and we respect our national assembly very much,” she concluded.