#National News

2020: Year for re-prioritisation for UN in Gambia

Oct 6, 2020, 11:40 AM | Article By: Yunus S. Saliu

The Resident Coordinator of the UN System Operational Activities in country has stated “2020 is the year for re-prioritisation for the UN in The Gambia.”

Her Excellency Wakana Seraphine on Friday disclosed this at the UN75 Online Spoken Word Poetry & Painting Competition Winners’ Award ceremony held in Banjul.

Organised by National Centre for Arts and Culture (NCAC) in partnership with UN – The Gambia national competition known as UN75 Online Spoken Word Poetry & Painting Competition for writers and fine artistes in The Gambia, it was one of the activities used to mark the milestone achievements of the establishment of UN.

She disclosed that the heart of this repriotisation agenda is the gathering of voices campaign to mark the United Nations 75th also known as UN75 “of which the event is part and further consultations with all national stakeholders to prioritise UN’s support to The Gambia.”

According to her, this year, the United Nations System in The Gambia sets out to ask people around the country what they feel are the most cooperation framework.

Meanwhile, at a time of many challenges including the Covid-19 pandemic, she said the gathering of voices campaign for UN75 acts as a platform for information repository that will inform the United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework (UNSDCF) for 2021-2025.

Madam Wakana explained that the UNSCDF instrument and National Development Plan primarily guide UNCT partnership with the government of The Gambia with the aim of achieving Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The Resident Coordinator noted that The Gambia recently celebrated two important events – the commemoration of the 55th anniversary of the country’s entry into United Nations and International Peace Day.

She therefore commended NCAC for its extraordinary contributions to the national conversations on UN75.

Commenting on the national competition and the entries received on both the poetry and painting contests “I can clearly say that everybody is a winner and that all your voices matter to us,” she stated.

She added that the artistry sparked hope and is in sync with the outcome of global consultation findings that the immediate priority for peoples of the world toward 2045 is improvement to access basic services such as healthcare, safe and clean drinking water, proper sanitation, education and greater solidarity.

She, however, challenged everyone to join the gathering of voices campaign on UN75 to contribute in the various platforms to push the fight for a better Gambia for all.

Hamat N.K. Bah, minister of Tourism and Culture expressed delight as the event was marked in the form of artistic and cultural performances, the culmination of a countrywide contest in poetry and painting.

He noted that the theme of the contest – ‘The Gambia We Want To See In 2045’ was meant to tease out ideas from Gambians “especially youths, what their expectations are for the future of our beloved Republic.”

He applauded the National Centre for Arts and Culture who has worked with the artists associations of Writers and Visual artists in doing a lot of sensitisation work on the radios, TVs, newspapers and through trips around the country.  “From Kartong to Basse, many people have participated from all segments of Gambian youth,” he disclosed.

Minister Bah commended UN System in the country for choosing to work with NCAC and Gambian artists during this great birthday of the UN, “it is highly appreciated, I suggest that this partnership continues.”

Hassoum Ceesay - director general of National Centre for Arts and Culture, Dr. Cherno Omar Barry – President of Writers’ Association of The Gambia among other dignitaries made remarks at the award ceremony of the UN75 Online Spoken Word Poetry & Painting Competition.