Mar 17, 2014, 9:21 AM
Twenty-one students from Juniata College in the US on 26 May 2011 paid a courtesy call on The Point newspaper at its offices on Garba Jahumpa Road in Bakau.
The visit was in line with their academic aspiration to gain more knowledge and skills on various fields in The Gambia.
During the visit, the students also donated D1,000 to the Trust Fund on the late Deyda Hydara, co-publisher and managing editor of The Point newspaper.
The twenty-one member delegation led by Professor Dr Emil Nagengast was received by members of The Point’s editorial team.
The acting editor-in-chief of The Point, Baboucarr Senghore on behalf of the company welcomed the students and thanked them for their show of solidarity with The Point.
The Point is a leading independent newspaper in the country, he said while briefing the students about the distribution and circulation mechanisms of the paper.
For his part, The Point’s acting deputy editor-in-chief I, Nfamara Jawneh, gave a brief history of The Point.
The company, he said, was established on 16 December 1991 by the late Deyda Hydara, the late Babucarr Gaye and Alhaji Pap Saine, who is the current managing director of The Point.
Mr Jawneh says The Point is an independent newspaper that promotes divergent views on issues of democracy and human rights. "We also cover women and children issues, politics, business, crime and court issues among others," he said.
"As the most authoritative independent newspaper in the country, we endeavour to remain committed to serving our readers to the best of our ability irrespective of their political affiliations, race, and religion and social status," Mr Jawneh said.
Pa Modou Faal, acting deputy editor-in-chief II of the paper, made similar remarks as did the previous speakers.
The paper has won two prestigious international awards for promoting democracy and human rights in The Gambia, Mr Faal says.
Also present at the briefing was the marketing manager of The Point, Saul Njie, and news editor Modou Sanyang.
Speaking on behalf of the students, professor Nagengast, who was a lecturer at the University of The Gambia in 2006 and 2010, expressed gratitude to the management for welcoming them to The Point offices with open arms.
Being one of the avid readers of The Point, Professor Nagengast said he is satisfied with the paper's content, adding that he is pleased that the paper is getting better every year.
He also advised journalists to be courageous and be professional in executing their duties and functions.
He noted that at the end of every summer, he would come with students to The Gambia to study The Gambia's history as well as its culture.
Professor Nagengast, who donated D1,000 to the Deyda Hydara Trust Fund on behalf of the students, disclosed that during their stay, they would visit universities, hospitals and some villages in the country.
The Juniata College has affiliated with the Gambia University, he said, adding that every year the college sends two students from the US to come and study in The Gambia.
One of the students, Becca Shuke, said this was her first time to visit The Gambia. Prior to the visit, she said they made some research on online newspapers in The Gambia.
According to her, they feel that The Point is the most independent newspaper in The Gambia. She commended the management and staff of the paper for their hard work.
The visiting students were later taken on a conducted tour of the various sections of The Point Offices led by members of the editorial team.