A delay in issuing a visa to Gambian star athletes Gina Bass and Ebrima Camara could hinder their participation in the Commonwealth Games, which started in Birmingham in England Thursday, The Alkamba Times (TAT) can report.
The Gambian delegation to the Games headed by Bakary Jammeh has arrived in the UK, whilst Africa’s fastest woman in 100 meters, Gina Bass, and her colleagues, Ebrima Camara, Adama Jammeh, Sangham Jobe, Alieu Joof, and Abdou are stranded in Paris, France.
Gina and Ebrima are expected to compete in the 100 and 200 meters races at the Games, provided they are granted visas on time.
The duo left the United States last week after an impressive performance at the just-ended World Athletics Championships in Oregon and were expecting to be with their compatriots already in Birmingham.
They were hoping to get their visas ahead of the Games opening and were kept waiting for nearly two weeks without any word from Banjul.
TAT understands that the delay in their visa approval by British Embassy officials in Banjul could have been avoided if government officials tasked with the responsibility had been supportive enough.
“This is sad considering the profile of Gina and Ebrima, and their participation in the Commonwealth Games. They should have made arrangements for them to have a smooth process free from hitches if they are serious about supporting sports, an official of the Gambia’s National Olympic Committee told TAT.