The IAEA team during a meeting with representatives of all governmental agencies that are part of the National Nuclear Safety and Security Committee. (I. Mundia)

A recent IAEA Advisory Mission to The Gambia advised the country to strengthen its radiation safety framework by creating a formal national policy and strategy for radiation safety and security.

The five-member team conducting the 9-12 July 2018 mission also advised the country to establish a dedicated nuclear law, an independent regulatory body and a national inventory of radiation sources.

Membership of The Gambia in the IAEA will take effect once it deposits the necessary legal instruments with the IAEA Secretariat. The country has no nuclear reactors but uses radiation sources in medicine, industry and research.

The team evaluated the country’s regulatory framework and processes for all facilities and activities using radiation. Team members reviewed laws that could be used to address radiation safety and nuclear security, and regulations that could be used to exercise regulatory control over radiation sources. They recommended that the country expedite its process to establish dedicated laws and regulations.

“Our advice aims to assist The Gambia as it formalizes its legal framework for radiation safety and security,” said Ahmad Al Khatibeh, an IAEA Advisor who led the mission. “By establishing a dedicated law and a clear framework, the country will improve its protection of people and the environment.”

The mission included meetings with Foreign Minister Mamadou Tangara, Environment Minister Lamin Dibba and officials from the Ministry of Justice and the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare.

The mission was part of a project to support African states in regulatory infrastructure development that includes 14 African countries. Benin, Mozambique and Eswatini (formerly Swaziland), hosted advisory missions earlier this year.

Courtesy of www.iaea.org