Indian company to construct UTG campus for US$53M

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

The Indian construction company that built the new National Assembly complex in Banjul has been awarded the contract for the construction of the University of The Gambia (UTG) Faraba campus.

Shapoorji Pallonnji Mideast, the Indian company, has signed an agreement worth $53.46 million with the Ministry of Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology and Religious Affairs (MoHERSTRA) for the construction of the campus.

The agreement was signed on Monday at MOHERSTRA conference room along Bertil Harding Highway, Kotu.

When completed, the campus is expected to house more than 6,000 students at any given point in time, and the university would start to offer at the campus master’s and doctorate programmes.

Speaking shortly before the signing ceremony, Dr Abubacarr Senghore, minister of Higher Education, said the signing of the agreement would propel the initiation of civil works for “an ultra-modern state-of-the-art university campus”.

The construction of the new campus, the minister said, is in line with “the government’s ardent desire” to transform the UTG to a world-class university and a centre of excellence.

The project is to be financed by funds, mainly loans, mobilised from the Islamic Development Bank (IDB), the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development, the Saudi Fund for Development, the Arab Bank for Economic Development in Africa, and the OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID).

The managing director and chief executive officer of Shapoorji Pallonnji Mideast, Mohan Das Saini, said the project would be completed on time.

The Point newspaper understood that the construction project might take up to three years or more to complete.

Minister of Basic and Secondary Education Fatou Lamin Faye said the signing ceremony is a culmination of negotiation for the construction project.

Bala Garba Jahumpa, minister of Works, Construction and Infrastructure, commended MOHERSTRA for its efforts in the preparation and eventual signing of the project.

“The biggest thank you goes to His Excellency, the president of the Islamic Republic of The Gambia, for the various projects and programmes he has been instituting to address the needs and aspirations of the young Gambian people,” Hon. Jahumpa alias ‘Action Man’ said.

According to the original design of the Faraba campus, when completed, it would consist of various faculties such as: Business Administration; Information Technology and Communication; Agriculture; Law Arts and Sciences; Architecture and Engineering; Graduate Studies and Research; Medicine; and School of Education. 

There would also be a student dormitory, chancery, a standard library, multi-purpose center, farmland, mosque and chapel, and so on.

More faculties including that of Journalism and Digital Media are expected to be in the second phase.  

Author: Muhammed Jobarteh and Lamin Jahateh
Source: Picture: Signing agreement between Higher Education Minister Senghore and Indian Co rep