#Article (Archive)

IVLP holds cultural bazaar extravaganza

Dec 31, 2009, 12:47 PM

Last Saturday was a joyous day for party lovers who gathered at the famous Sahel Relax club for a cultural bazaar extravaganza.

Organised by the International Visitors Leadership Program (IVLP), in partnership with the Embassy of the United States of America in Banjul, the bazaar brought together members of the IVLP including lawyers, politicians, journalists, US Embassy staff and a cross section of the community.

The session, among others, seeks to bring together IVLP Alumni members, their families and the Gambian public to celebrate the significance of a unique exchange programme and diverse cultures.

The IVLP is an international visitors leadership programme that invites distinguished community leaders to exchange programmes in the US. The invitation to visit the US under the auspices of the International Visitors Leadership Programme is extended by each US Embassy around the world.

Since its inception almost seven decades ago, there are more than 290 current and former chiefs of state and heads of government, 2000 cabinet level ministers and many other distinguished leaders from the public and private sector. Since 1963 to date, the US Embassy has sent over 320 Gambians through this very important programme.

There was entertainment, food and various sporting events, such as basketball, soccer, volleyball, tennis, table tennis and play station.

In a brief statement to the IVLP members at the opening of the event, Tashawna Bethea, the Political and Economic Officer at the US Embassy hailed the members for their commitment to the association, adding that the Embassy and Washington will continue to give its support to them.

For her part, the President of the association, Mrs. Kinza Jawara-Njai dilated on some of the activities and achievements undertaken by the association under her leadership. These, among others, include the drafting of the association's constitution, a Speaker Forum held at the Kairaba Beach Hotel and various courtesy calls at the US Embassy officials.

Mrs. Jawara-Njai, however, expressed concern over the low turnout of members at meetings, urging members to show more commitment to the association.

According to her, the current executive has exhausted their term limits, and therefore called on members to come up with their nomination so as to hold elections at the soonest possible time.

At a close door meeting, members took time to review the constitution and the way forward.

Meanwhile, members are also reminded that there will be a meeting at the Fajara Hotel, slated for Saturday 2nd January 2010 at 4:30pm. All members are kindly urged to attend and on time.