Jun 15, 2012, 1:57 PM
Seventy-four Nigerian Technical Aid Corps (TAC) members recently completed a two-year service of volunteerism in different sectors of the economy in The Gambia.
The volunteers comprising 33 medical personnel and 36 teachers were deployed across the country including provinces as far as Koina.
Officials say the Technical Aid Corps (TAC) scheme set up in 1987 by the Federal Government of Nigeria was aimed at assisting countries of the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) regions in manpower and skills development as a way of strengthening south-south co-operation and self reliance among the various countries of the region.
Speaking at a reception organised by the Nigerian High Commission recently, Mrs Vanessa Des-Ogugus, Nigerian Consular in The Gambia, said that since the inception of the TAC scheme, it has reinforced the focus of Nigeria’s foreign policy initiatives, especially aimed at strengthening and sustaining both sub-regional and regional co-operation.
“The TAC initiative was not only expected to provide trained manpower assistance in all fields of human endeavour but practically demonstrates the spirit of the south-south cooperation and also assists in capacity building of the recipient countries through training and retaining of personnel.”
However, she revealed that The Gambia has always been a major beneficiary of the scheme and also one of the leading beneficiaries among the ACP countries.
According to her, the 74 volunteers who successfully completed their duty, worked in various Gambian sectors including health, education, agriculture and have impacted positively on the lives of many Gambians.
She finally commended the volunteers for their successful duty while thanking the Gambia government for creating the enable environment.
For his Part, Festus Epetimenin of Joseph Ayo Babalola University, Nigeria, commended the Nigerian government for coming up with such a programme.
He congratulated the volunteer for being resilience and being good ambassadors.
He urged them to add value to what is existing in Nigeria when they return home. “The government of Nigeria is doing a lot to provide opportunities,” he lamented
Speaking earlier, Ebrima Saidy, representing the Director of Human Resources, Ministry of Basic Secondary Education (MOBSE), also thanked the volunteers for their gesture.
“You have not only impacted knowledge but you assisted your colleagues as well,” Saidy noted, while further expressing delight for their dedication towards the ToR.
Mod Jeng, representative from MOBSE, also revealed similar sentiments.
Some TAC volunteers who are given the opportunity to share their experience have noted some of their challenges and success.
However, they described the initiative as a worthwhile venture.