Cultural display by Gambian Residents in Stockholm

By: Baboucarr Fallaboweh 

The Gambian cultural week in the Swedish city Stockholm is back after being halted for a few years due to the Covid19 pandemic. On Saturday, hundreds of natives of the West African country domiciled across Sweden gathered at Husby Träff for the classical event.

 The rainy Saturday couldn’t be noticed thanks to the vibrant glamorous atmosphere with ambiance, arts, culture, and music. 

The Association, formed in 1976 to stand for the welfare of the Gambians in Sweden, displayed the Gambian culture and tradition for hours, bringing an atmosphere of unity and cultural diversity. 

 The chairperson of the Gambian Association, Fatou Jarra Owens, told Alkamba Times that the event was an excellent opportunity for Gambians to get together and showcase their rich culture.

“We have a rich culture which should be preserved and taught to our children. The turnout shows the representation of generations, sex, and religion. Although, I am thrilled to see the kids today, we should ask ourselves what can we do so that when we are no more, our children can inherit “rich culture and tradition. Therefore whatever you are doing, you need a vision and foundation. Our children should inherit that vision so that it becomes a continuity to carry on and even make it a better one. We must carry on the work and know we are building a future for our children and offspring”. Fatou said. 

Empowering women

“I believe we are companions with our male counterparts; God has given us the wisdom and strength which show us that we can lead too. Islam even honors women; my leadership will not just empower the women but even the youths. This show cannot be carried by one individual.” 

” if we do stuff with vision, this is the only outcome. I am happy with the turnout. Next year we are returning to how we used to do things. A welcome day, a sports day, a day designed for the kids, a party, a cultural night, and a display of our food and culture. Gambians should take ownership, not sit on the sideline, and hope for a miracle. Together, we are stronger. Don’t isolate yourself; the past has gone. Now we look into the future and way forward.” She added.

Cross section of Gambians attending the cultural event

The lineup of performances included historianOusman Janneh alias Papa Jay, Ali Suso (Kora player), female artist Amy Jah Bless, Mo Blacka, Mandinka traditional dancers from Gothenburg Dembo, and the Roots band, and Sabr.

Politicians, businesses, influencers, Sportsmen, and academic gurus were honored and praised on Saturday. The third part of the show saw delivering certificates to celebrate indigenous Gambians across all works of life. Gambian Sweden-based politicians Momodou Malcolm Jallow(Vanster party)and Alagie Drammeh (Social Democrat) were all present, while the Chief Guest of Honour was Marie Gillen.

 The event ended with the display of Kankurang, Zimba, and hunting.

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