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US Deputy Ambassador visits GAMCOTRAP

Jan 20, 2010, 4:24 PM | Article By: Sarata J. Dibba

Madame Cindy Gregg, the Deputy US Ambassador in Banjul recently paid a short visit to offices of the Gambia Committee on Traditional Practices (GAMCOTRAP), in Bakau New Town.

According to Deputy Ambassador Gregg, the purpose of the visit was to show appreciation to the works of GAMCOTRAP, in particular on empowerment of women, women's education, health, gender-based violence and on women's rights, and to learn more about them, and also to see if there is any way that the embassy can do to make their work easier.

"I'm extremely impressed with the success they are doing and the slogan yes we can do it," she stated.

In her response, the Executive Director of GAMCOTRAP, Dr. Isatou Touray expressed happiness in receiving them, describing the visit as significant.

"This is not the first time that we've been visited by the US Embassy. It's a big pride to be here and it keeps us going, it's not an easy task of doing this work, sometimes you feel like why not I leave it but we are trying, change is taking place, and by the end of this year if every thing goes well, we will come up with a law against FGM," she stated.

Dr. Touray also lamented the low rate of literacy in the country as one of the factors affecting their struggle. "The literacy rate is very low, very few people can read and it really takes time to make change of attitude, because one thing is that, FGM is associated with religion, and it actually force some people to read, but many have now come to know the reality," she added.

According to her, a lot of sacrifice is needed to help curb the menace. As she put it, male resistance is very high. She noted that they have plans for 2010, which according to her, "are to raise funds for schools, empower women leaders, train them on their rights and how to request their needs from the National Assembly Members when it comes to voting them to office."

"We will do the final draft to use it when it comes to election," she said, noting that they would do some film shows to help improve on the situation.

"We have been in the struggle for over 20yrs," she said, and then assured that 10yrs from now there will be a big difference.

"We can do it if we want change but we must work with people, and add value to their lives, because at the end of the day is the people who matters most," she concluded.