By Fatou Sillah
The president of the Republic of The Gambia, His Excellency, Adama Barrow, upon the completion of a two-day site visit of the OIC projects, said they are very confident that the Gambia will be able to host the OIC Summit in the very near future.
” For the OIC, we are very sure we will organize the OIC because we were able to host the Muslim League, they are so connected to the OIC. That is the biggest Foundation for the King. They wanted to organize a conference and a regional conference, and they choose the Gambia. That is a test case for us. That gave us a lesson to learn on how to organize the OIC and for that one we were able to organize it, about 40 or 42 countries were represented, with over three thousand participants. It was a big meeting. So, it is the size of the OIC. We are sure we can organize the OIC, we are very confident that now we can do it, not the size of the country that matters but what you can do. But I think Gambia can do it, definitely. There is no date scheduled yet, but our intention is to organize it in 2023, we are negotiating with the secretariat and the OIC member countries. We are going around, and diplomacy is all negotiations. We are negotiating to make sure we have a date that we think we will be prepared enough to organize the OIC, but we are sure of organizing the OIC because the members are also supporting,” said the president
When ask for his reassessment of the progress on the fifty Kilometers Road project, considering that he voiced dismay at the pace of work on his last visit, the president responded that he saw tremendous progress has been registered since then.
“Now they are progressing, we have seen tremendous progress as far as the 50-kilometer road is concerned and the way we have seen the roads, it will make a big impact if they are finished. Before the end of the year, we will all see the progress. Because for the ordinary man and not the technician, we have to see something black before we believe that it is a road”
The President voiced satisfaction with the pace of work taking place at the VVIP lounge of the Banjul International Airport and other projects under way.
“We started with the VVIP at the international airport. As of now, it is above 80% completed. They have progressed. We are really impressed with what we have seen. I think so far there are a lot of projects that are going on, but they are all progressing, including the OIC. When I visited the last time, it was at a very difficult situation because relocating facilities was difficult, demolition was a problem. So, we came together and discuss this and accept the reality is we have to do those things before we can do real work”
The president made the remarks at state house upon the completion of his site visit to project areas.