May 23, 2008, 4:32 AM
Eleven medical students leave the country today for four-year studies in Taiwan.
In line with the Taiwanese embassy's tradition, the mission yesterday oragnised a farewell ceremony for the students at the Taiwanese embassy conference room in Bakau.
In his address to the students, the ambassador of the Republic of China on Taiwan, Richard Shih, congratulated them for winning the scholarships to study in his country. The bio-medical special class, as they are referred to, he said, is a brainchild of President Jammeh, who makes health a priority.
He reminded the students that the Governments of Taiwan and The Gambia through his embassy have made tremendous efforts to prepare a tailor-made course for the students.
"We choose the best out of the 15 medical schools in Taiwan for a tailor-made class for you just for your comfort," he said. "We arranged everything for you to make sure your studying will be smooth."
He however challenged the students to work hard while in Taiwan, adding that the president and the two governments have done well for them. "You have to do your best," he further challenged the students.
According to the Taiwanese emissary, this is the fifth time they are organising special classes for Gambian students. He said the condition for the course is that if any one fails the person will be sent back home. "We will closely follow your performance in Taiwan," he told the students.
Currently there are over one hundred and fifty Gambian students in Taiwan, Mr Shih noted, saying that "this recent batch will not feel lonely while there". He also told the students that the people of Taiwan are as friendly as Gambians.
Saidou Nyang, in delivering the vote of thanks on behalf of the team, hailed the Governments of The Gambia and Taiwan for the offer.
He said the gesture is another clear manifestation of the cordial ties that exist between the two nations.
"Laboratories play a crucial role in every nation and this offer will further strengthen The Gambia's health service delivery," he said.
He also hailed the Taiwanese embassy for making their dreams come true.