minister of Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology (MoHERST),
Badara Joof has revealed in a statement that the government is to set a 65%
target training on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematic (STEM)
fields with a view to promoting technological development in the country.
The minister was speaking over the weekend at the International Diaspora Conference held at the Kairaba Beach Hotel in Senegambia, Kololi.
The theme for the conference was: ‘Education and National Development in the New Gambia’ aimed at identifying realistic and relevant world class processes, models, practices that can be implemented to provide quality education from kindergarten to University in the New Gambia.
Mr. Joof extolled Prof. Abdoulie Saine for his positive response and motivation from the onset ever since the Diaspora Forum was discussed. He added that MoHERST has paved a direction which was imperative for stakeholders to support the strategies being adopted.
“Higher education in the country will be positioned within the confines of excellence and quality to support development, thus taking on board breakthroughs in related disciplines such as health, food self-sufficiency to enhance employ ability, and promote a sustainable economy through entrepreneurship and innovation,” he pointed.
Minister Joof went on to disclose that since the current government inherited a broken economy coupled with human capacity deficiency, it was therefore apt to ensure that education is prioritised to produce quality and relevant education, appropriate to addressing current national development needs.
Coordinator of the Diaspora, Prof. Michael Banutu Gomez of Rowan University in U.S.A. indicated that prioritising education from kindergarten to university is important for the development of any country; but that can be achieved through change of attitude, behaviour and a change of system on how things are done.
However, Prof. Gomez recommended for the government of The Gambia to provide a separate budget to support Gambians in the Diaspora and friends of The Gambia for the realisation of the Diaspora Conference and achieving quality education, with an added impetus to sustain activities of the partnership that have already begun. “This budget can be overseen by the MoHERST, under the leadership of the honorable minister,” he opined.