(JollofNews) – A former  Gambian civil society and human rights activist has announced his intentions to run for the position of Major of Kanifing Municipal Council in April’s local government elections.

Bakary Badjie said his interest to vie for the position of mayor came after series of encouragement and consultations from different groups of young people and stakeholders who are interested in establishing in KMC, a person who understands the Council’s functions as well as the challenges impeding its efficiency.

The former nominated youth councilor of KMC said under a new democratic dispensation, KMC today, more than ever, needs a dynamic person who has an unimpeachable character, is passionate about the plight of Gambians and has demonstrated concern in championing a cause for a just, equitable and prosperous society.

Mr Badjie is known to be a person of integrity and foresight who stood for the Gambia at its dire time of need and would therefore always defend the interest of the people of Kanifing Municipality.

Born in the Kanifing Municipality,  Mr Badjie is widely known for his youth work, his participation in local government administration across the country.

Over the past 15 years, Mr Badjie has  dedicated his life to community development and has served in different networks and capacities at home and abroad during his career as a youth/child rights/social worker, broadcaster and local councilor.

As a justice activist, he had engaged in both online and on the ground campaign to raise civic awareness, fight injustices, expose the ills of the former regime and help restore the democracy enjoyed in the Gambia today.

Prior to his declaration, Mr Badjie worked with his support team to develop a concrete development oriented and people-centred manifesto that outlines some of the key initiatives he would institute when elected into office. These include to:-

•Reorganize the Council Administration and ensure that it is inline with the provisions of the Local Government Act and create effectiveness in delivering its mandate.

•Head a Council that is transparent and accountable to the people of the Municipality as well as involve the populace in determining best strategies in their governance.

•Reform the taxation, duties and other revenue collection processes and ensure that they don’t harm businesses but also ensure revenue collected benefits the payers.

•Develop and refurbish infrastructure such as markets, car parks, playgrounds, and community centers and extend electricity and water supply to subserviced areas.

•Promote youth and women entrepreneurship, culture and other artistic activities of people.

•Support education, skill acquisition and protect the rights of the vulnerable groups.

•Establish systems, processes and standards which would ensure the Council is accountable, transparent and responsible to the tax payers and communities of the Kanifing Municipality.

With his impressive background in both civil society and other non-state actors, community work, youth and women’s empowerment and local governance, Mr Badjie said he is the best person to occupy the driving seat as a mayor who would provide the strategic leadership needed to propel the council into a professional institution – one that has sustainable initiatives to generate revenue and prudently use those to provide services to the municipality and her people, and is accountable and transparent.