The Gambia: ILO’s EIIP project participants obtain a contract from the Government

Community Road Development and Maintenance (CODEM), an enterprise established through the ILO project, has successfully secured its first contract from a municipal council to rehabilitate a drainage system in the city centre, after the project completion

Noticia | 4 de febrero de 2020
The ILO completed its Employment-Intensive Investment (EII) project in The Gambia in September 2019, generating over 300 employment opportunities for youth. The project supported 250 young participants to establish two enterprises with their acquired skills: Community Road Development and Rehabilitation (CODEM) in Banjur and Gunjur Road Rehabilitation Association (GURRA) in Gunjur.

The project achieved a major milestone for its sustainable outcome when CODEM secured its first contract in January 2020, worth 80,000 Gambian Dalasi, from the Kanifing Municipal Council (KMC) to rehabilitate drainage along the Kairaba Avenue, one of the most congested streets in the country. 20 members of CODEM, including three women and three youth with hearing disability, take on this new project on drainage rehabilitation. Mr. Talib Ahmed Bensouda, Mayor of Kanifing Municipality, paid an unannounced visit to the construction site and confirmed that the CODEM members conform to the Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) principles.

Project participants engaged in roadwork in Banjul
CODEM has taken ownership of the ILO’s EIIP approach: the members are taking advantage of this first contract to equip themselves on the job with new construction techniques, while developing infrastructure assets. For the implementation of the contract, CODEM recruited skilled engineers on masonry to work together with them.

“Indeed, we were not trained on how to lay concrete blocks,” says Ms. Sainabou Jammeh, Managing Director of CODEM. “However, it does not mean that we only keep rehabilitating roads and we stop there. We decided to have this contract to showcase our capacity, but also as a form of training to grow our business.”

At the ILO’s high-level future of work dialogue on the margin of the Tokyo International Conference on Africa’s Development (TICAD) 7, Ms. Jammeh demonstrated pride in her job by declaring that she is now a job creator instead of a job seeker. 125 CODEM members were unemployed at the time when the ILO launched the project. Ms. Jammeh and her team endeavour to create more and better jobs for youth in The Gambia.