Education Students´ Association (EDUSA) of the University of The Gambia has set
a precedent in the university by commemorating World Teachers’ Day for the
first time ever.
The day, celebrated on 5 October annually, is set aside by the International Labour Organization (ILO) of the United Nations as a day to reflect on the constraints and gains registered in the teaching fraternity.
The Gambia’s theme for this year’s commemoration was “Teaching in Freedom, Empowering Teachers”.
The commemoration began with a procession accompanied by display of scout band and was witnessed by some members of the university administration, lecturers, members of the students’ unions of both the college and the university, invited dignitaries, school teachers and students.
Ousainou Loum, the acting dean of UTG School of Education, expressed delight and gratitude to the Education Students’ Association, particularly the executive, for the foresight and wisdom to celebrate “this significant day”.
He added that the day is critical and meant for teachers to retrospect and recognise their roles as foundation builders for any progressive-minded nation.
The president of EDUSA, Alhagie B. Sama, highlighted the significance of his association’s involvement in commemorating World Teachers Day for the first time in history, citing that teachers, globally, have been challenged and censored by some authoritative degrees or directives that dictate the teaching curriculum and restrict their freedom in the classroom.
He further said that the commemoration availed them the unique opportunity to speak out on their plights and raise the concerns affecting the teaching fraternity so government and its partners and agencies would intervene and provide a lasting redress.
President Sama thanked and felicitated members of his executive and general education student body of the UTG for their cooperation and dutifulness for making an indelible mark in the annals of the university and the country by extension.
Sama lauded the Gambia Teachers’ Union Cooperative Credit Union (GTUCCU) and the Education for All Network (EFANET) for not only funding the event, but also honouring their invitation to celebrate the day in great fashion.
Ebrima D. Kah, a lecturer at the UTG, dilated extensively on the roles of university education in empowering teachers. He argued that the UTG, being the highest learning institute in The Gambia, has a phenomenal role in promoting and empowering teachers and the teaching community.
Mr Kah, however, charged the students to make maximum use of their stay in the university as the country’s hopes and treasures lies solely in their hands.
Deliberating on the roles of teachers in national development, the Vice Principal and overseer of the office of the head of Gambia College School of Education, Madam Isatou Ndow, said teachers’ role for a holistic national development and sustainability cannot be overemphasised, noting that they are the architects of development of all facets.
She emphatically noted that all other life disciplines are shaped and made by teachers. While calling on teachers to prize their worth, Isatou Ndow reminded them to firmly uphold, cherish, and exhibit the value of honesty, discipline, transparency and accountability in the discharge of their functions at all times possible.
On behalf the Gambia Teachers’ Union Cooperative Credit Union (GTUCCU), President Martin Gomez expressed gratitude for the bold step taken by the Education Students’ Association of the UTG in celebrating World Teachers Day to recognise the good and selfless services of teachers to humanity.
EFANET’S national coordinator, Siyat Gaye, said all signs are that the education trend of The Gambia is promising and would make a desirable difference over time, if all hands are on deck.