EYEAFRICA TV: Banjul, The Gambia: Following President Barrow’s three-day working visit to Doha, Qatar, a high-level delegation from the gulf state has arrived in Banjul this week to make a first-hand assessment of the development priority needs of The Gambia, a State House release said.
The group’s first port of call was the Office of the President, where they held discussions with the Department of Strategic Policy and Delivery on Monday. They were taken through a PowerPoint presentation on the various aspects of Gambia’s development blueprint – the National Development Plan, particularly high priority areas.
Hamad Mohamed Al-Rumaihi from the Qatari Foreign Ministry Department of African Affairs responsible for Central and West African Countries Division, said their trip was a ‘fact finding” mission.
President Barrow’s this month Qatar visit has culminated into the signing of four new Memoranda of Understanding and bilateral agreements which entail mutual cooperation in the sectors of communications, judiciary, customs, and youth and sports.
“We know that there is an excellent relation between Qatar and The Gambia, which translated into the state visit by President Barrow to Qatar. The two leaders held fruitful discussions on various areas of potential intervention. This is a follow up to that state visit to help assess Gambia’s needs,” Mr. AlRumaihi said.
The delegation comprises of line ministries of health, education and economic empowerment areas like agriculture and youth and sports. Additionally, the private sector, national and international NGOs operating from Qatar are also represented, and they were led by the Qatari Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Qatari Fund for Development. While in Banjul, they will visit different departments and organisations.
Samer R. Fragieh, Senior Strategic Planning Advisor at the Qatari Fund for Development said the mission was a strong reflection of the strong ties between Qatar and The Gambia, as well as the leadership of both governments.
“We are hoping that from this trip, we can get back to Doha with [a] clear understanding of the priorities of development based on Gambia’s NDP,” he said, noting that their visit is designed to fast-track and cut through government bureaucracies in support of Gambia’s development.