By Ramatoulie Jawo
President Adama Barrow has on Saturday laid the foundation stone for the construction of Radisson Blu, five-start hotel in Bijilo.
The construction of the Five-start hotel worth US$100 million, is part of the Gambia’s preparations to host the 2022 OIC Summit.
Speaking at the event, His Excellency, President Adama Barrow expressed his excitement about the prospective impact of the project on lives and livelihoods in the country.
“This proposed five-star hotel project is the single biggest investment in the tourism sector, since the country attained Independence in 1965,” he added.
He said within three years, his government has successfully mobilised more than US$300 million in their effort to host the world’s biggest organisation of the Muslim Ummah.
Barrow said the OIC Summit projects are designed to be legacy projects, and their advantages, benefits and impact will far outlive the Summit.
“For this reason, we will make sure that we get it right in the best interest of the nation and the global Muslim community. We will not accept indifference or foot-dragging anymore,” he added.
The head of state said the edifice that will be constructed will match the Radisson Blu brand in the subregion saying “it incorporates its facilities, architecture, services, and management”.
The President said Tourism accounts for about twenty percent (20%) of Gambia’s GDP, making it a critical contributor to the economy.
Yankuba Dibba, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of OIC in his welcoming remarks described the infrastructure “very unique” among the OIC Submit projects.
“This project took us three good years for it to progress in the Gambia,” he said.
Abdoulie Cham, Chairman of IMMOGAM who in April 2021, signed the project with Gambia said: “I assure the government that the construction of this hotel will take us for only 15 months,” he added.
Cham said that the hotel would create job opportunities for the youth of the Senegambia and boost the economy of The Gambia.
Honourable Hamat N.K. Bah, Minister of Tourisim said the Five-start hotel would boast Gambia’s tourisim sector.
Bah called for more five hotels to be built in the Gambia for revenue generation in the tourism sector.