By Hatab Nyang
The health authorities’ advice for people to maintain a safe distance as a way to curb the spread of COVID-19 is not observed at all on the beaches of Gunjur, Kartong and Sanyang.
People spend several hours together at the beach side. The beach is a source of livelihood for thousands of Gambians.
The fishmeal factories were closed but when they resumed, they attracted many people to resume work because of the pay involved.
Shops along the beach open at 6 am and close by 2 pm while fishmeal factories work as long as the boats come. There is no restriction as to when the fishmeal factories should open and close unlike the shops.
Social distancing is not observed at all at these landing sites. As a matter of fact, the workers of the fishmeal factories are not provided with protective gears and nor are the fisher folks especially the big boats called ‘Filaturunay’ which has 30-40 strong men in each boat.
A fisherman at Gunjur called on the Government to regulate the operation of the fishmeal factories particularly during the global pandemic, COVID-19.
“The Government should ensure that COVID-19 is curbed. It must ensure that it does not spread at the beach,” he said.
This reporter observed that along the beach in Gunjur a multitude of people were gathered there mingling without observing any of the health guidelines to curb the spread of COVID-19.
Also at the Gunjur beach side, drivers continue to fill their vehicles to the maximum.