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Three Gambian military officers to study in Taiwan

Mar 1, 2011, 12:30 PM | Article By: Yusuf Ceesay

Three Gambian military officers have been awarded Taiwanese defence scholarships to study in the Republic of China on Taiwan.

Lieutenant Colonel Salieu Dem, Cadet Officer Modou S. Jallow and Cadet Officer Basady Gassama were bade farewell by the Taiwanese Embassy in Banjul yesterday at a ceremony held at the embassy in Fajara.

According to the authorities, the goal of the study programmes is aimed, among others, at developing the human resources, cultivate military leadership and promote the military co-operation and ties between Taiwan and its allies.

Speaking on the occasion, the Ambassador of the Republic of China on Taiwan, Richard Shih, congratulated the awardees for their achievement. He implored on them to be obedient during their stay in Taiwan, adding that this was part of the commitment between the two sister Republics.

Ambassador Shih assured the gathering that this magnanimous gesture will not be the last, announcing his embassy's commitment to work hard to secure scholarships for the Gambia Armed Forces (GAF) in Taiwan.

The permanent secretary at the Ministry of Defence, Harry Sambou, urged the awardees to concentrate on their studies. "You are all pioneers" he said, further calling on them to face the challenges.

"See yourself as soldiers under the military rules," Sambou reminded the awardees.

PS Sambou commended President Yahya Jammeh for his guidance in trying to professionalize the armed forces to be among the best, not only in the sub-region but in the world at large.

Also speaking at the ceremony was Major General Ousman Badjie, Deputy Chief of Defence Staff, who described the occasion as joyous for the members of the Gambia armed forces, noting that this was the third batch of GAF senior officers to leave for Taiwan.

He also commended the Republic of China on Taiwan for the gesture, further mentioning Taiwanese help not only to the military but to other sectors in the Gambia, ranging from health to agriculture, among others.

Major General Badjie cautioned the military officers to emulate their previous colleagues and be good ambassadors.

Cadet Officer Basady Gassama thanked the Republic of China on Taiwan for giving them the opportunity, assuring all that the confidence and trust bestowed on them will be safeguarded.