The Gambian President, Yahya Jammeh, has clarified that the country's health sector, private businesses, security and other service institutions would be allowed to operate on Fridays once the new work hours and days come into force in February.
In a statement issued by his office in Banjul, President Jammeh declared that banks, Gambia Ports Authority, Gambia Revenue Authority and the private sector would not be affected by the changes in the West African country's official working hours and days.
'The general public is further reminded that the new official government working schedule is Monday to Thursday from 08:00am to 06:00pm and lunch break is authorised between 1:30pm and 2:30pm,' the presidency said.
'All permanent secretaries and heads of departments are required to bring this information to the attention of all staff and to stringently adhere to the new working arrangement and must come to work and leave at the prescribed times.'
Meanwhile, President Jammeh recently said the new working days and hours were designed to allow Gambian workers have 'more time for prayers, agriculture' and other social activities.
However, some opposition leaders and the Gambia Workers Confederation have raised concern over the new official working time, calling on the government not to implement the proposed change.