Dec 22, 2009, 1:50 PM
Speaking at the event, George Staples, charge d’affaires at the US Embassy in Banjul, said the relationship between The Gambia and United States is “very strong.”
He has only been in Gambia for a few months, and would make sure that the relationship between the two countries grows and prospers and becomes even stronger, he added.
Mr Staples looks forward to working with The Gambia very closely in deepening their collaboration to create a more lasting and meaningful relationship.
According to George Staples, AmCham’s commitment to bring awareness on numerous business and investment opportunities in the country is to inspire Gambians to start businesses, to learn a trade, take charge of their finances and throw a variety of programmes such as the Youth Entrepreneurship Week in micro-enterprise development and training.
AmCham is equipping a new generation of enterprising Gambians who would set out to start businesses of their own, he went on, adding that it was very important because a country is not really going to progress if it is left to the government to do business all the time; it needs a private sector.
William Coker, Secretary General of West Africa Insurance Companies (WAICA) and the guest speaker on the occasion, spoke on the theme: “Insurance as a veritable instrument for sustainable business development.”
Insurance is the only industry that exists for the primary purpose of ensuring the country’s continued existence and sustenance of other industries, Coker told his audience.
When other industries go down, insurance brings them up by doing proper compensation; when there is no insurance, that industry dies, he added.
Kebba Tamsir Njie, CEO of AmCham, said they live in a society that is accustomed to hospitality and kindness, adding that this generation and that of those to come need a most realistic spirit of appreciation, and to develop and harness the culture to celebrate the best in society.
He said engaging young people to serve our communities and become mentors and role models, indeed, is a step in the right direction.
There are those among them who take risks in their businesses be it entrepreneurship, educational sciences, agri-business, constructional real estate and in other fields.
The awards given were in three categories: recognition awards, partnership awards and the triple A awards.
The Triple A Award went to President Yahya Jammeh for naming the Banjul-Serrekunda Highway after former American President, to US Charge D’ Affairs George Staple, and to the Office of the Vice President, represented by Binta Sidibeh, executive director of the Women’s Bureau.
Other Triple A Award recipients were Mustapha Njie TAF Construction, Amadou Samba of Gacem company, Tijan Njie, a Gambian movie producer, Badou Samba, co-movie producer, and several others.
AmCham President Abdoulie Touray gave the opening remarks.