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Bankers Association to bridge skills gap in banking industry

Sep 17, 2014, 10:01 AM | Article By: Al Amin

The Gambia Bankers Association is in the process of upgrading its training institute to be providing quality training in banking and finance in line with international standards up to chartered level, the highest professional level training in banking and finance.

The association on Tuesday organised a day long workshop where the topnotch players in the country’s banking industry and other stakeholders reviewed and validated a bill for the establishment of Chartered Institute of Bankers of The Gambia.

The bill gives a legal backing to the Institute of Bankers of the Gambia, established in 2010 as the training arm of GBA, to stand as an autonomous national institute that provides training in banking and finance to chartered level.

Speaking on the occasion, Pa Macoumba Njie, president of the Bankers Association, said The Gambia with 12 banks will continue to need the services of well-trained banking professionals.

“It is appropriate to say that we have now entered the phase of professionalizing the banking services in this country.The increase in the number of banks in The Gambia within a relatively shorts period of time has not been matched by a corresponding increase in the number of professional bankers,” said Mr Njie, who is also the managing director of Trust Bank, one of the leading banks in the country.

For Mr Njie, the provision of international standard chartered level training in banking and finance is a very important phase in the history of banking in The Gambia.

He said the Institute of Bankers of the Gambia continues to make significant progress in the recruitment of members, provision of quality education in banking and finance and conduct of profession examinations leading to the award of internationally recognised certificates.

“I am pleased to inform you that the number of our enrolled students has increased significantly over the past years.The institute now has 200 registered members and over 150 of these have enrolled in various ACIB programme [Associate Chareterd Institute of Bankers],” he announced.

“It is gratifying to note that in 2015, the institute will register the first batch of chartered level students for ACIB external examination,” the president of Bankers Association added.He said it is expected that very soon the institute will graduate the first batch of its home-trained chartered bankers.

Mamour Malick Jagne, executive secretary of GBA, said the step taken by the Bankers Association to see the provision of chartered level training in banking and finance in The Gambia is a logical follow-up on the commitment of managing directors to train their staff to international standard.

He said when the bill for the establishment of Chartered Institute of Bankers of The Gambia is endorse by the National Assembly, Gambians will no longer need to travel overseas to study to become chartered bankers.

“Indeed, students in the sub-region can be attracted to come to The Gambia to undergo this course,” he said.