Jul 26, 2011, 1:10 PM
The foundation of the Agence France Presse (AFP), the official French news agency based in Paris, France, Monday donated six brand new laptops to The Point newspaper.
The gesture, presented to the management of The Point by Robert Holloway, director of the AFP Foundation, comes after fruitful collaboration and cooperation between The Point newspaper and the AFP Foundation.
Mr Holloway was accompanied to The Point newspaper by the French charge d’affaires Jean Marc Transon, whose embassy has continued to partner with The Point, especially in the area of promoting the French language in The Gambia.
Described as timely, the gesture will go a long way in enhancing the work of reporters of The Point newspaper.
In his remarks at a short but joyful presentation ceremony held at The Point, Phillip Kotey, General Manager of the newspaper company, expressed appreciation with the AFP Foundation for what he described as “a timely and welcomed gesture”.
Noting that the gesture will go a long way in boosting the production of the newspaper, Mr Kotey lamented the difficulties faced in running a newspaper, especially in Africa.
According to him, the cost of running a newspaper is more than the income it generates and, as a result, the management of The Point will always look elsewhere for assistance in ensuring the sustainability of the paper.
While describing the partnership between The Point newspaper and the AFP Foundation as God given, Mr Kotey thanked the donors for their assistance and noble gesture.
‘We hope that this relationship will go from strength to strength in the future,’ he remarked.
In presenting the laptops to the management of the newspaper, Mr Holloway recalled that in November last year, he met with Pap Saine, Managing Director of The Point, at a workshop in Dakar, Senegal, during which they held discussions on ways and means of assisting the paper.
Noting that the late Deyda Hydara, former Managing Editor and co-founder of The Point worked with the AFP News Agency for over 30 years, Mr Holloway said his foundation deemed it fitting to donate some laptops to The Point.
He expressed hope that more and more assistance will come up to ensure an effective service delivery system at The Point newspaper.
Pap Saine in his vote of thanks commended the AFP Foundation for the gesture, noting that it will go a long way in boosting the production of the newspaper.
According to Saine, The Point is trying its best to inform, educate and entertain its readers both in English and French, adding that the newspaper is the only newspaper in The Gambia that has won two international awards (in Germany 2006 and Australia in 2010).
While recalling the work the late Deyda Hydara did with the AFP, Saine noted that The Point newspaper is the only bilingual paper in The Gambia, publishing both in English and French.
While expressing The Point newspaper’s intention to increase its French page, Saine said this is because we have a lot of francophones in The Gambia, and a lot of them look up to the paper for the news in French.
He stated that with the intervention and cooperation of the AFP Foundation, The Point newspaper will increase its production in French.
Saine commended the staff of The Point Newspaper for their dedication and hardwork despite some constraints.
He also commended the charge d’ affaires at the French Embassy for his support to The Point newspaper over the years, noting that despite all the constraints, the newspaper will continue to serve as the voice of the voiceless.He therefore appealed for more support from the French Embassy and government especially with training and equiptment.
Madior Diop, the French page columnist moderated the presentation ceremony.