Tailors Pleads to Government to Reduce Tax Levied on Them
The Latrikunda Market Tailors Association said the tax levied on them by the government is “very expensive” and it is really affecting their business.
These revelations where made during the graduation of 16 young people who were trained to become tailors by the association of the Latrikunda Market.
Badou Faal, Chairman of the market Committee said the amount of tax that tailors in the Gambia pay is very expensive and that it is causing them to face a lot of challenges in their work. He pleads “we are not saying that we won’t pay tax but we are pleading with the Government to reduce it for us”. Faal further stated that the country’s economy can improve if the government supports those with such skill as they contribute immensely in the country’s economy. He said if everybody can take care of him or herself financially, then the country’s economy will improve.
He said that the graduation of these 16 young people marks another milestone in the history of their association; and that it is a graduation like any other school graduation. He added that any teacher’s wish is to see his or her student deliver to an expectation.
“If you have knowledge on a skill like tailoring; you are worth celebrating”. Faal asserted.
Amat Cham, Secretary of the association said their association was formed with the aim of bring all tailors in Latrikunda under one umbrella. He said that tailoring is in their blood and that it is the only profession they chose to do.
He went to explain some of the challenge tailors face in their work ranging from high cost of tax, rent and taking care of the welfare of their “aparantees” (Students) by their bosses. Cham continued that those with tailoring shops carry lots of responsibilities on them when it comes to taking care of the welfare of their students. According to him, they take care of the health, feeding, and clothing and give them some small amount of money which they call “mandaa”.
“With all these responsibilities; what can you make of the money you work if the tax is very expensive on us”? Cham questioned.
He said the association has been contributing immensely in the development of their constituency by conducting cleansing exercises at the Fajikunda Health Centre, Bundung Magistrate court premises and many mosques within the constituency.
Cham urge the government to look into the affairs of tailors and provide them with conducive environment to enable them do their work properly. He described the event as a historic one as it has never happened before whereas the media houses came to cover it.
“This is overwhelming because we have been doing this graduation but no media ever covered it”, he revealed “We are really grateful to Allah for this day”.
Saikou Marong, National Assembly Member for Latrikunda highlighted on the importance of acquiring skills as it can create self-employment and can also help one to get a job in a foreign land. He said “not all of us can sit in an office or destined to work in an office; therefore it is very crucial that these young people are trained on skills”, Marong said.
He commended the association for the hard work and dedication they have towards their work and also in his constituency. He said the association is the first one to pay him a courtesy call when he won the legislative election in 2017. He assured the association of his support and told them that he will take their matter to the National Assembly for further scrutiny.
Ousman Bittaye, one of the graduates said tailoring is a very tough profession to learn but with passion and dedication one can go a long way in it. He said “one needs to be very patient when learning tailoring as it goes with lot of hard work and some hurdles as well”.
“Some think tailoring is an easy job; but it takes a lot of hard work and time to be a star in it”. He said
Bittaye advised his fellow youth to learn skills as it is very important and it creates self-employment. He thanked their boss Lamin Mbarra Jobe who happens to be the mastermind of the whole training to giving them such opportunity.
The Latrikunda Market Tailors Association was formed in 15th April 2016.
By Adam Drammeh.