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Government Donates One Million Dalasis to NAYCONF

Oct 29, 2008, 6:22 AM | Article By: Nfamara Jawneh

With barely 52 days to the National Youth Conference and Festival (NAYCONF) the government on Tuesday made a huge donation to the biannual event to ensure its success.

The Secretary of State for Youth and Sports, Honourable Sheriff Gomez, on behalf of the government, yesterday presented the cheque amounting to one million dalasis to the organisers of the forthcoming National Youth Conference and Festival (NAYCONF).

With this, and other pledges, organisers are very much optimistic that this year's NAYCONF, to be held in Farefenni, will be historic.

Speaking at a stakeholders meeting on the NAYCONF at the conference room of the National Youth Council, where he presented the cheque, the Secretary of State for Youth and Sports, Mr. Sheriff Gomez, described the move as a manifestation of government's commitment in ensuring a successful NAYCONF. "This presentation is no doubt a manifestation of government's commitment in empowering young people. Young people have been, they are and will continue to be government's priority," he said. He challenged the various organising committees to redouble their efforts to make this event memorable. He said that the government have shown the political will in empowering young people over the years. He implored the private sector and individuals to follow in the footsteps of government in supporting NAYCONF. He encouraged the committees to work as a team.

Mr. Gomez used the opportunity to announce some institutions that have also pledged to support this year's NAYCONF. They include UNFPA, UNESCO, and ActionAid/AYCAH, UNAIDs, Gambjobs and RUE Chicken firm.

Speaking earlier, Mr. Mambanyick Njie, Permanent Secretary for Youth and Sports, reaffirmed his department's readiness in empowering young people. "Youth have to be encouraged in a meaningful way. Any person who wants to help President Jammeh develop this country should support the young people," he said. NAYCONF, he said, has to be treated as a national event. He said that there is no room for self blames this year and those organisers must ensure success. He called for transparency and checks and balances in the management of funds.

Pa Malick Ceesay, Executive Secretary of the National Youth Council, thanked the government through the Youth and Sports Minister for the gesture.

Meanwhile, the organisers are looking for 3.4 million dalasis to host over 500 youths from across the country and beyond for a week.