The vice president and minister of Women's Affairs Wednesday presided over the inauguration of the Bakoteh Police Station as part of activities marking Gambia's 48th Independence Anniversary.
Her Excellency Aja Dr. Isatou Njie-Saidy, who is also the chairperson of the National Security Council, in her inaugural statement, said the government is building more police stations in the country in order to strengthen law enforcement and combat crime.
She said the police are an integral part of the society and the easy access to service they provide is key to maintaining the country's most cherished peace. "Much has been invested in the construction of the facility and as a result, proper care must be taken in maintaining it," she stressed.
The vice president also advised the people of Bakoteh and the general public not to see the presence of the police as a threat but as a reassurance of their security.
On his part, Ousman Sonko, the minister of Interior, commended the government for coming up with the facility, saying that it will serve as a life changing project for Gambians.
Minister Sonko also stressed that the building of police stations across the country is a step in the right direction, adding that enough resources have been invested in the project, which requires it to be handled with care.
While calling on the people of the area to always help the police in making their environment crime-free, Minister Sonko also emphasised the need for landlords to identify the type of people they rent out their houses to and what activities they are involved in.
The inspector general of Police, Yankuba Sonko, said the Police Force is strengthening its efforts in the area of community policing, which, he said, would enhance the relationship between the police and the communities.
He expressed hope that the station will immensely help the police to tackle crime and other problems in the Bakoteh area. "The success of the police in a country largely depends on their relationship with the people," he added.
IGP Sonko thanked President Jammeh and his government for creating the enabling environment that supports the smooth operations of the police.
The government funded the construction of the station, while construction work was done by the Police Engineering team.