Gambians Anticipate OIC Summit with High Hopes: TAT Surveys Public Opinions 

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Photo Credit: OIC Gambia

By: Alieu Ceesay 

As the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) summit in The Gambia on May 4-5 approaches, excitement builds among the Gambian populace. The Alkamba Times team measures the nation’s heartbeat, documenting the varied reactions and anticipations preceding the international assembly of world leaders.

The Banjul summit is the fifteenth edition of the second largest international gathering of world leaders, the OIC summit.

In the days leading up to the weekend summit, Gambians have been vocal about their expectations, with people from all sectors of society weighing in on the issues that matter most to them, including economic growth, social justice, and political stability in the muslim world.  

Sanna Baldeh, a third-year student at the University of the Gambia, sees the summit as a chance for the country to leverage the support of wealthy OIC member states for its development.

However, he expressed concerns about the level of preparation, considering the high-level nature of the summit. According to him, Gambia appears unprepared as some OIC projects still need to be completed.

The Vice President of The Gambia, Mohammed BS Jallow, has said hosting the 15th Summit of the OIC costs the government over 500 million dalasis, which is equivalent to seven million three hundred seventy-seven thousand three hundred and fifty dollars ($7,377,351).

Ma Sanneh Jara, a commercial driver, encourages drivers and the public to warmly welcome OIC delegates and be good ambassadors of the country, as the event offers a unique opportunity for The Gambia.

“It’s not about politics, so everyone has to come out to show love as one Gambia. Let’s celebrate it; it is ours.” 

The theme for this year’s summit is “Substantial Development,” which is much needed in many African countries, including The Gambia.

Ebrima Jabbie, a civil servant, encourages Gambians to join the event without any political motives.

“The summit means a lot for us as Gambians. It has much development, so let’s unite and make this event successful.” 

Alieu Jarju stated that the summit should be used as a chance for the Muslim world to influence Israel to cease its hostilities towards the Palestinians.

“I will be happy if the Muslims unite under the Banjul summit to call for immediate ceasefire and provision of humanitarian aid to the people of Gaza. This is also an opportunity for the Gambia to make its position known to the world about global issues,’ he told TAT. 

Sulayman Jarju expressed disappointment about the summit, especially regarding infrastructure projects such as road development.

“I welcome the summit; just one unfortunate thing is the incomplete road. I heard Some guests coming for the summit would spend their night in Senegal, which should not be the case. Aside from that, I’m grateful for everything about the summit.” 

On Tuesday, the President and the OIC in the Gambia received over 87 vehicles to accommodate the 57 member states attending the OIC Banjul Summit 2024.
OIC new fleet of cars
Fifty-seven member countries are expected to attend the summit, and The Alkamba Times will update its readers.

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