Gambia to host 15th Session of OIC

Monday, June 10, 2019

The Gambia will host the 15th Session of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation conference in 2022. This decision was decided at the 14th Islamic Summit Conference of Heads of State and Government held in Mecca, The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, on 26th Ramadan 1440H (31 May 2019), according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation and Gambians Abroad.

The theme of the Conference was “Hand In Hand Toward The Future”, and was chaired by His Majesty King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud who is the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques. 

The Gambia’s delegation was led by His Excellency President Adama Barrow, and was accompanied by the Honourable Minister of Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation and Gambians Abroad, Dr. Mamadou Tangara, the Attorney General and Honourable Minister of Justice Mr. Abubacarr Tambadou, the Secretary General and Head of the Civil Service Mr. Ebrima O. Camara, and The Gambia’s Ambassador to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, H.E. Mr. Omar Gibril Sallah, Minister of Local Government and Lands and Religious Affairs Mr. Alagie Musa Drammeh, officials at OIC Gambia Secretariat among others.

The Gambia was elected to the Bureau of the Islamic Summit Conference as one of three Vice Presidents, alongside the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, and the State of Palestine. 

The 14th Islamic Summit Conference was preceded by the Council of Foreign Ministers Meeting on 29th May 2019, and the Senior Officials Meeting of 27th May 2019, as is the norm.

At the end of the Conference, the Heads of State and Government adopted the Final Communiqué of the 14th Islamic Summit, covering such important areas as Al-Quds Al-Shareef, crises across the Muslim world as well as Muslim communities and minorities.  The Communiqué also addresses economic, social, and cultural area of shared interest within the Islamic Ummah.

The Final Communiqué of the 14th Islamic Conference contained significant Decisions for The Gambia. In particular:

1.         “...The Conference affirmed its support for the ad hoc Ministerial Committee on human rights violations against the Rohingyas in Myanmar, using all international legal instruments to hold accountable the perpetrators of crimes against the Rohingya. In this connection, the Conference urged upon the ad hoc Ministerial Committee led by The Gambia to take immediate measures to launch the case at the International Court of Justice on behalf of the OIC. It further called for ensuring free and unrestricted access to humanitarian assistance by affected persons and communities.” (Paragraph 47).

2.         “The Conference decided to convene its 15th Session in the Republic of The Gambia in 2022 at a date to be determined in coordination with the OIC General Secretariat, calling upon the OIC Member States and relevant organs to cooperate with the General Secretariat and support the host country and make efforts for the success of the Islamic Summit Conference in Banjul.” (Paragraph 98).

Finally, The Gambia was also able to secure support for the continued operation of the National OIC Secretariat for the period up to 2022.

In conclusion, it is worth noting that decision for The Gambia to host the 15th Islamic Summit Conference of Heads of State and Government is the culmination of robust diplomatic efforts by The Government of The Gambia, under the leadership of His Excellency President Adama Barrow.  H.E. Foreign Minister Tangara, as a Special Envoy of His Excellency President Barrow, backed by The Gambia’s Diplomatic and Foreign Service, led several missions to key Member States of the OIC in Asia, the Middle East, and in Africa in particular, to secure the requisite support.  The Government of The Gambia would therefore like to extend its sincere gratitude to all Member States of the OIC for the confidence reposed to host the 15th Islamic Summit Conference, and looks forward to their continued support and cooperation, as well as that of the People of The Gambia, and that of the OIC General Secretariat, towards a successful Summit in Banjul in 2022.

Issued by: Communication Unit of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation and Gambians Abroad