least forty-two men graduated at The Gambia Karate Federation over the weekend
with black belt awards after completing an intensive examination. The ceremony
was held at West Field monument and attracted hundreds of people.
Vice president of the Karate Federation, Babucarr Njie said it was not easy to organise the programme but with commitment, passion and willingness, they were able to manage and successfully conduct it.
Njie urged people to join the Federation because it disciplines people without affecting them from running their daily life activities. “All our black belt holders are working or learning and it does not stop them from functioning at their duties as good citizens.”
Njie said the karate men are trained to train others to help instill more discipline at home, saying people don’t train karate to fight against people but for self defence in the event that criminals or armed robbers attack. “It was hard for us to organise this kind of activity because of financial constraints. I call on government, companies and institutions to help the Karate Federation. We sometimes have international competitions where we represent The Gambia which means we are contributing to the country’s development,” Njie said.
Secretary general of the Federation Sang Gomez said they are disappointed because they invited the Ministry of Youth and Sport and the National Youth Council but none of them were represented. “I call on black belt holders to keep the training and work hard because holding black belt is the first step in karate,” He noted.
Gomez said they are constrained by a standard place for karate activities, equipment and a ground punch for combat and other activities. “The Federation is here to enhance karate to make sure everyone understands it in the country.”
Gomez called on the government to help them with external links, saying the Ministry of Youth and Sports once linked them with one world karate champion and they still need those kind of links to upgrade their skills and to interact with colleagues outside the country for better technical know how.
Dawda Jobe, a black belt holder from Dragon Karate group expressed happiness at the Federation for giving them the chance to showcase their talent. “It is not easy to become black belt because I have been in the game for more than 10 years before I get the title. I urge all those doing karate to keep the training real and respect it in order to reach your dreams.”