U.S. Embassy marks 243rd Independence Anniversary

Thursday, July 04, 2019

The U.S. Embassy in Banjul on Tuesday celebrated the 243rd Independence Anniversary of the United States of America. The event, honored by state officials took place at Cocoa Ocean in Bijilo. The United States of America is a nation made up of fifty states that were referred to as colonies before independence. The state gained independence as early as the 17th century; the declaration of independence, however, was adopted by the second Continental Congress on July 4, 1776.

Speaking at the event, Ambassador Carl Paschall highlighted the achievements the nation has made since independence such as the space programme. He said there are astronauts from the United States, Russia, and Canada on the international space station with the aim of exploring space for scientific discoveries.

The Gambia, he said, played an important role in the U.S. space programme by partnering with NASA to support the U.S. space shuttle. “The airport at Yundum was the site of U.S. Gambia cooperation in the event the space shuttle was required to make an emergency landing.”

Technological innovations, he added, has helped to improve health, food security and transportation, noting that these advancements will not be possible if the youth are not empowered to prepare for what he called an ever changing world.

The minister of Basic and Secondary Education, Claudiana Cole spoke on the theme: ‘Education Seals Development and Challenges in the Labour Market as far as STEM and ICT are Concerned.’ She said nothing is more important than acquiring high quality education standards, citing the importance of STEM and ICT education and how it contributes to national development.

However, she said STEM education remains a challenge in the labour market for many sub Saharan African countries, attributing the challenges to limited science infrastructure, resources and capacity to improve science education through research, inadequate science teachers amongst other challenges.

Mrs. Cole further revealed that the progressive science initiative and the progressive mathematics initiative are programmes that require the use of smart technology in teaching mathematics, science and English. She said it is presently being piloted in 10 LBS and 14 SSS in the country.

Representing the president of The Gambia, minister of Justice and Attorney general of The Gambia, Abubacarr Tambadou said the relationship between the U.S.A. and The Gambia is based on shared values of democracy and human rights. The United States of America through its agencies, he said, works with the government of the Gambia and civil society organisations to strengthen democracy, good governance, advance human rights and support education.

Author: Fatou Bojang