It is a sad fact that VERY few Governments (if any) would GIVE accommodation to students for FREE,so to call for an embassy to be closed because there is no money for a specific use is extreme. BUT for Communication Unit of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation and Gambians Abroad to wait until until SEVERAL days before issuing their response to the article seems a little strange.
Tuesday, August 07, 2018
It has come to the notice of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation and Gambians Abroad of the Republic of The Gambia that The Standard newspaper had published in its issue of Monday, 30th July 2018, an opinion piece in its Viewpoint column titled: “Our Gambian embassy in Dakar should be...” Categorically stating in the first paragraph of the piece that the Embassy of the Republic of The Gambia in Senegal should be shut down. Fatu Network carried a similar story in its publication of 29th July 2018, under the headline “Our Gambian embassy in Dakar should be...”
The Ministry is also informed that the same news is making circles in various social media platforms. In light of the above, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs wishes to inform the general public that on 8th June
2018, the Embassy of the Republic of The Gambia in Dakar received an email from one Ebrima L. Dampha, who claims to be the President of the School of Business and Public Administration of the University of The Gambia, requesting the Embassy to provide accommodation for 60 Gambian students in Dakar.
On 9th June 2018, the Ambassador of The Gambia to the Republic of Senegambia, His Excellency Ousmane Ndure, convened a meeting with staff of the Embassy to discuss the email and agreed that the Embassy should look for some hotels in Dakar as requested by Mr. Dampha. On 10th June 2018, the Embassy replied to Mr. Dampha’s email conveying that the Piscine Olympique de Dakar was identified for possible accommodation of the 60 students but unfortunately they wanted free accommodation, which the Embassy cannot afford due to the limited resources.
It is public knowledge that all exams in Senegal, including Entree en Sixieme (Common Entrance), BFEM (Secondary School Leaving Certificate), BAC (A’ Level) and even Universities are scheduled to hold at the end of July every year. Therefore, requesting for free accommodation on campus or at any school during this period is not possible.
The Embassy received both the President and the Secretary General of the said Student Association and was informed that the Embassy does not have the means to provide free accommodation for 60 students. The Embassy advised them to engage institutions for sponsorship before venturing into such trip and that hosting 60 students should be properly planned as it entails so many logistics.
The Embassy further urges the students to prepare a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for a twinning with their Senegalese colleagues in order to formalise the annual study trip and possible exchange visits between the University of The Gambia and Senegalese Universities. They promised to heed to the advice but unfortunately they went on to circulate the unfounded article.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs wishes to inform the general public that Embassies do not have enough resources and are not mandated to provide direct accommodation for individuals on private businesses.
Gambians travelling abroad are urged to make their own arrangements prior to leaving the country.
Issued by: Communication Unit of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation and Gambians Abroad