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25 Gambian Students Leave For Taiwan Today

Sep 3, 2009, 8:19 AM | Article By: Nfamara Jawneh

As many as twenty-five Gambian students will leave the country today for the Republic of China on Taiwan.

The group known as Special Agriculture Class will be pursing a four-year degree programme in Taiwan, at the National Pictung University.

The Taiwanese embassy yesterday organised an orientation programme for the students to enable them have a first hand information about Taiwan, as well as Taiwan Technical Mission operations in the Gambia.

Addressing the students at the Paradise Suites Hotel, the Ambassador of Taiwan in the Gambia, H.E Richard Shih congratulated the students for their achievements, describing them as lucky one among the lot.

According to him, it's very difficult to select a few out of the lot. He revealed that State House has set up a committee to conduct the interview and selection of candidates.

According to the Taiwanese diplomat, Pictung University is the best university in Taiwan as far as agricultural studies is concerned, noting that the environment of the school is very good.

"There you can focus on your studies to pursue the dreams of your life.

"This special programme is a tailor-made programme for the Gambian students to study bachelor degree in agriculture in Taiwan," says Ambassador Shih.

He informed the young Gambians that the importance of agriculture cannot be over-emphasised.

It's your responsibility to work hard while in Taiwan and come back to contribute to the development of the country, he told the youngsters.

Ambassador Shih informed the students that education is very high and competitive in Taiwan and that having all the necessary opportunity they have no excuse to fail, but to study hard.

"It's your responsibility to study hard," Ambassador Shih told the students.

Taiwan, he said, is very much similar to the Gambia in terms of climate and hospitality.

He challenged the students to give their best in Taiwan.

He revealed that two other tailor-made programmes were made for Gambian students in the areas of ICT and civil engineering. Participants of these courses, he said, are all doing well.

Yusupha Dibba, the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology revealed that the programme is a special initiative of the President.

He commended President Jammeh for his foresight and interest in the country's agricultural development.

"Take this as a special privilege and not a right", he told the students.

Food security is important and no economy can be developed without producing its own food, he emphasised.

Taiwan, according to PS Dibba, is a very developed county and do believe in quality performance.

He encouraged the students to raise the Gambian flag in Taiwan, while serving as good ambassadors of their families and the country as a whole.

Abdul Jobe, the Deputy Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Agriculture also extolled the students to work hard in Taiwan. He told them that it's a big challenge they have undertaken, but can surely make it if they work hard.

"If you really focus in Taiwan you will surely come back with flying colours," he noted.

DPS Jobe told the young Gambians that they have the best opportunity to read as they are very young.

According to him, President Jammeh's dream is to make the Gambia "the food basket of Africa".

Mr. Harry Sambou from the Office of the President also spoke at the occasion. 

"The worst thing you can do for President Jammeh is to fail in Taiwan because he has done all the groundwork for you" he said.

"You are going for a purpose and that is to succeed in Taiwan", Sambou told the students.

He also advised the students to remain united in Taiwan and serve as each other's door keeper.

Integrate into the Chinese society and appreciate their culture, he concluded.

Dr. Wei-Ho Lin Head of Taiwan Technical Mission in The Gambia made a PowerPoint presentation about their work in the country.

The occasion was moderated by Mr. Tom Lee, 1st Secretary at the Taiwanese embassy.