Mar 25, 2014, 9:54 AM
relationships between the Kanifing Municipal Council (KMC) and Commune de Mbao
from Senegal has hit another milestone with a 60-member delegation led by the
deputy Mayor of Mbao, that has arrived in Banjul for a two-week friendly visit.
The Senegalese delegation, which comprises the Mbao deputy mayor and fifty students within the ages of seventeen, among other officials, arrived in Banjul Tuesday via the Banjul Ferry Terminal before proceeding to their base at the Mansea Beach Hotel in Kololi.
According to the organisers, the 50 students from Senegal, together with 50 children from different schools in the Kanifing Municipality, would be engaged in a 14-day intensive lecture on culture, education, and sports programmes among other important sessions.
Speaking to the delegates at the Mansea Beach Hotel in a formal welcoming ceremony, characterized with musical entertainment, KMC Mayor Yankuba Colley said the two councils had signed a bilateral relationship and the visit of the Senegalese delegation was geared towards breaking the barriers between the two nations.
He said he would like the participants from The Gambia and Senegal to interact and build strong friendship.
“We had the same fruitful engagements with our friends in Ziguinchor before, and I hope the meeting in Banjul would build from those previous engagements to a more fruitful relationship between the two countries, which are only separated due to colonialism,” he said.
The KMC mayor called on the Gambian participants to maintain discipline and make their guests feel at home, saying it is all about exchanging and making friendships as the future leaders.
“We believe if we can bring you together now you will be able to build a strong love and unity between the two countries.
“Be assured that both of your governments are aware of your coming here, and they supported the idea,” he told the children.
“To my Senegalese friends, sons and daughters you can feel free, enjoy your stay in the Smiling Coast of West Africa. Just make-sure that you capitalise on the opportunities presented to you by your instructors.”
Also addressing the meeting was the deputy Mayor of Mbao, who also doubles as the Chef de Mission of the Senegalese delegation, Rama Kanyi, who thanked the Senegalese High Commissioner to The Gambia and the Gambia government for making their trip possible.
She said there is no difference between the two countries, and looking at the gathering “you could not identify the Senegalese kids and the Gambian kids; they all have the same colour and speak the same language”.
“I believe the person who deserves to be congratulated is Mayor Yankuba Colley, because it is his resilience and love that warranted us to send our kids here, and we believe they will have a peaceful and fruitful stay,” she said.
Aissata Thimbo and Ousseynou Ndiaye, both students with the delegation from Senegal, said they came to The Gambia not to only learn from a different environment, but to also make friends in a drive to foster strong relations between the two countries.
Ndey Isatou Njie and Mariatou Jarju from The Gambia assured their Senegalese counterparts of a warm reception throughout their stay in The Gambia.