Feb 13, 2012, 11:59 AM
As part of activities marking the 14th anniversary of the July 22nd military take-over, the Secretary of State for Tourism and Culture, Mrs. Nancy Njie, last Friday laid the foundation stone of a multi-million Dalasi beach club in Tujereng, Kombo South, Western Region. The need for the tourism facility is predicated on the fact that tourists that come to the tropical sunshine paradise of The Gambia would be thrilled by the availability of such facilities in addition to the de luxe hotels that have for some time been the main focal points of the tourism industry in the country.
Some investors consequently deemed it necessary to come up with something that would give holidaymakers a real feel of the country. One among those investment companies, that is concerned with and committed to ensuring that The Gambia carves a giant status in the tourism sector, is Sparam Gambia Limited.
The facility, named Mangrove Beach Club, will be built at a cost of D225m and will be developed in three different phases.
Speaking on the occasion, Mrs. Nancy Njie, Secretary of State for Tourism and Culture, described the occasion as a milestone in the history of Gambian tourism. "This proposed high quality hotel is indeed a pride to the tourism industry of the
She underscored the importance of tourism to the socio-economic development of the country and congratulated the investors for their foresight in choosing The Gambia as one of their investment destinations.
"Tourism contributes between 16% to 18% of the country's GDP. It provides employment to over 20, 000 people. As a result of its economic importance, the government of The Gambia under the leadership of President Jammeh has the long term vision as stated in the blueprint Vision 2020 of turning The Gambia to a tourist paradise and a major tourist destination through product diversification and quality improvements."
According to Secy. Nancy Njie, the project will greatly benefit not only the tourism industry but also the local people in general. "This is no doubt a move in the right direction towards transforming The Gambia into a tourist destination," she said.
For his part, Mr. Thomas C. Hiese, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Sparam Company, expressed delight in having the opportunity to invest in The Gambia. According to him, the company feels very proud and delighted to contribute its quota towards the development of Gambian tourism.
Mr. Hiese's Gambian counterpart, Momodou Jagana, commended President Jammeh for creating the enabling environment for more investors to come into the country.
Other speakers on the occasion included Mr. Alieu Mboge, Director General Gambia Tourism Authority, Hon. Paul Mendy, National Assembly Member for Kombo South, and Mr. Karamo Bojang, the Alkalo of Tujereng.
Also present on the occasion were Mr. Ousman Sonko, Secretary of State for the Interior, Momodou Kotu Cham, Secretary of State for Forestry and Environment, Mrs. Fatou Lamin Faye, Secretary of State for Basic and Secondary Education, Mr. Lamin Bojang, Secretary of State for Works, Construction and Infrastructure, among other dignitaries.