Sep 2, 2013, 1:01 PM
The government of Taiwan through its embassy in Banjul Wednesday presented two cheques for US$226,500 to the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare in Banjul.
The cheques were presented at a ceremony held at the Office of the Secretary General and Head of the Civil Service.
The money is meant for the renovation of the first phase of the Royal Victoria Teaching Hospital (RVTH) in Banjul and to support the sponsorship of seven Gambian doctors studying in Ghana.
In presenting the cheques, Ambassador Richard Shih said the donation was part of his government’s commitment to supporting its allied nations.
“It is my pleasure and honour on behalf of the government and the people of the Republic of China (Taiwan) to show our fraternity with The Gambia government and the people by presenting the cheques to sponsor seven medical doctors studying in Ghana, and the second being to sponsor the first phase of the renovation of the Royal Victoria Teaching Hospital (RVTH) in Banjul,” he said.
Ousman Jammeh, secretary general and head of the civil service, received the cheques on behalf of the government who in turn handed it over to the health minister, Fatim Badjie.
Speaking on the occasion, Mr Jammeh thanked the ROC government for the gesture.
He said the gesture was once again another demonstration of the cordial bilateral relations between the two countries.
“We do also recognise that even though we may not be giving you rewards in terms of the support you are giving us in monetary terms, we will also and always stand by Taiwan wherever they are and wherever we are called upon to show that support,” said Mr Jammeh.
He reiterated the Gambia government’s continued support to the cause of Taiwan.
The minister of Health and Social Welfare, Fatim Badjie, stressed the importance government attaches to the health sector.
She described the ceremony as traditional, adding that her Ministry over the years has been a beneficiary of various assistance and support from the Taiwanese government.
Minister Badjie said that the seven doctors that are being trained would be graduating in the not-too-distant future.
“It will really go a long way in addressing many of our health issues and this is how we can move the health sector agenda forward, she noted. “We thank you once again and I think the whole country really needs to know how much impact Taiwan does in developing nations like The Gambia.”