VP urges religious leaders to preach peace

Tuesday, January 09, 2018

Fatoumatta Jallow-Tambajang, the vice president and minister of Women Affairs of the Republic of The Gambia has call on religious leaders to continue to preach peace and pray for the country with a view to enable the country achieve mammoth development.

She made this remarks recently during the celebration of 40 years anniversary of Mahad Islamic Institute and its proprietor and founder of the Islamic institute, Sheikh Ahmad Banding Drammeh, in Brikama, West Coast Region (WCR)

VP Jallow-Tambajang said every human being should learn in order to know his/her religion. “President Barrow sent message to all religious leaders across the country to keep praying for peace, togetherness and development of the nation,” she added.

She thanked Sheikh Banding Drammeh for his great efforts in contributing his quarter towards the socio-economic development of this country through Islamic education.

The president of Supreme Islamic Council (SIC), Muhammad Lamin Touray spoke at length on the significance of the forum. Touray hailed Sheikh Banding Drammeh for his contribution and tireless efforts towards the success of the Supreme Islamic Council in The Gambia.

The SIC president explained that Sheikh Banding Drammeh is the one who took his responsibilities to form the council and later handed over it to Muhammad Lamin Touray, saying that Sheikh Ahmad Banding Drammeh also taught him the Holly Quran in 1977.

The principal of the Islamic Institute, Khalid Drammeh, expressed similar sentiments on the importance of the forum. Quoting from a Hadith, Drammeh added that, the best amongst us is the one who learnt the Qur’an and teaches it to others.

He said that the institution, after 40 years has become a conducive home to many scholars and students in The Gambia and within the sub-region. Sheikh Ahmad Banding Drammeh, he continued, has been known for his truthfulness and wisdom in his propagation of Islam both in theory and practice as well as promoting unity among the Muslim Ummah.

For his part the head of the general secretariat of Islamic/Arabic Education, Sheikh Issa Darboe thanked Sheikh Ahmad Banding Drammeh for his great contribution to the development of this country. “So many students that have passed through the institution are now lecturing in other counties and most interestingly they use the Islamic book prepared by Sheikh Banding for their lecture notes,” he explained.

The programme ended with theater performances, poem reading, and documentary film about Sheikh Ahmad Banding Drammeh. He was also certificated in recognition of his tireless effort towards the promotion of Islam in the country.

About Sheikh Ahmad Banding Drammeh

Sheikh Ahmad Banding Drammeh was born in 1939 at Brikama Town. Sheikh Banding is a BA holder in Arabic language at Al-Azhar University in Egypt and a PG diploma in Islamic studies at Da’wa College in Libya.

He started his educational career at local Islamic schools called (Karanta, Daara, Majliso) with his uncle Sheikh Alhagie Malamin Drammeh in Brikama. While with his uncle in Brikama, he taught him Qur’an, Tafsir, Arabic sciences and Islamic belief system.

In 1960 Sheikh Ahmad Banding Drammeh discretely left with intention of travelling to Egypt to increase his knowledge. On the way to Egypt, he lived in Ghana at a village called Sedro (350km) from Accra) for three years. At Sedro, Sheikh Ahmad built a school named Ridwan School for training Qur’an and Islam. From there, he proceeded his journey to Nigeria and then to Chad.

In his achievements, he established the first Islamic institute in the region of West Coast Region. He established the association of Gambia Islamic and Arabic language scholars and publication of a monthly magazine (voice of Islam), and the monthly paper was published in Arabic and English. It was concerned about Muslim issues by developing the religious consciousness of the youths.

Author: Modou Cham