News Personality Of The Week

The Big Read: Ambassador Abdoulie M. Touray (Baax), a Living Legend

The Big Read: Ambassador Abdoulie M. Touray ( Baax), a Living Legend

In this first edition of the Weekly Column dubbed ‘The Big Read‘ on LamToro News, we introduce Ambassador Abdoulie M. Touray.

In this column we celebrate Gambians and great personalities who have been doing well in every sector of national development in serving the nation. The column comes out every Friday on LamToro News.

Our guest today is Ambassador Baax Touray.

Please read on:


Early Life and Education:
Born in Banjul – The Gambia Mr Abdoulie Touray, started his education career at the then Malfa Infant School and moved to Wesley Primary School.  He successfully passed the Common Entrance Examinations and was admitted to Gambia High School and transferred to form 3 at Armitage High School where he completed his GCE ‘O’ Level education.
He trained as a Teacher at the then Yundum College now Gambia College before obtaining a scholarship to study at Truett McConnell College in Cleveland, Georgia where he obtained an Associate Degree in Business Administration (cum Laude) in 1974.  He moved to Morehouse College and graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics cum Laude in 1976 and proceeded to Atlanta University and obtained his Master’s Degree in Business Administration (MBA) in 1979.  He did his post-graduate at Harvard University and Georgetown University in the United States of America.

Employment Record:
Mr. Touray returned home in 1980 and joined the National Investment Board as a Development Economist and role through the ranks to become Chairman and CEO in 1989 a position he held up to 1994.  In that capacity, he served on the Board of Directors of several notable institutions including telecommunications company, ports authority, insurance and banking corporations to name but a few.
He is the Founder and current Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Sahel Invest Management International.  He was appointed as the First Chairman of the Gambia Investment Promotion & Free Zone Agency (GIPFZA) from 2001 to 2003.  He also served as Chairman of Public Utilities Regulatory Authority and Chairman of the Governing Council of the University of the Gambia. He is President of the American Chamber of Commerce (Gambia) and Founder President of the West African Chartered College.

Ambassador Abdoulie M. Touray widely known as Baax Touray is one of The Gambia‘s living Legends. He serves as a role model who inspired, supports and guides many iconic persons who are doing great and contributing immensely to The Gambia‘s socio-economic development. Having set a great track record of development in many sectors especially in business enterpreneurship, Ambassador Abdoulie Baax Touray remains one of the greatest inspirational figures and development-oriented personalities that the Gambia can boast of. His achievements in the public service and private sector including the country‘s Chamber of Commerce and Indutsry, University of The Gambia, etc, have added a great value to the economic transformation in our country‘s development.

Mr. Touray is Chairman of Sahel Investment. He was appointed as Ambassador of Global Entrepreneurship Network (GEN) for The Gambia sometime last year. GEN is the largest organisation of Entrepreneurs from around the world operating in over 200 countries.

Abdoulie Baax Touray is an entrepreneur and a fine gentleman of the highest standard. He has made significant contributions to many sectors of national development and has served as a role model for many Gambians and non-Gambians alike.


Mr. Touray has authored three (3) Books. On April 26, 2024, he was received in audience at the State House in Banjul by President Adama Barrow during a courtesy call. Mr Touray presented his Books to the Gambia leader and disclosed his plans to publish them.

Here are the 3 Books Authored by Abdoulie Baax Touray

  1. Selected Speeches during my tenure in public service 
  2. Milestones of the Gambia Chamber of Commerce and Industry- I served as President from 2001 – 2006 
  3. Aide Memoire to the Government of The Gambia- How to Fast Track Economic Development and Transformation.

Summary Of Mr Touray‘s Development Record:


1 – Abdoulie M. Touray returned to The Gambia in 1980 after his studies in the USA, having obtained his Bachelors in Economics and Masters in Business Administration in MBA – He financed his studies through his work at Marriott Hotel first as a dishwasher and later as Head Waiter.

2 – Mr Touray applied for jobs and received offers from Central Bank , Ministry of Finance and Trade and National Investment Board ( NIB ) as an Economist and accepted the NIB offer in August 1980 .

3 – After 8 years of dedicated professional service- Abdoulie M. Touray was appointed as Chairman and CEO by President Sir Dawda Kairaba Jawara to succeed his Mentor- Abdou Sara Janha , who was appointed Secretary General and Head of the Civil Service. The accomplishments of NIB are summarised in the pictorial attachment.

4 – After the 1994 Coup d’ Etat by then Captain Yahya Jammeh the NIB was changed to National Investment Promotion Agency ( NIPA ) then to Gambia Investment Free Zones Agency ( GIPFZA ) and Mr. Abdoulie M. Touray was appointed as its First Chairman. GIPFZA is now known as Gambia Investment Export Promotion Agency ( GIEPA).

5 – Mr Touray is the Founder of SaHel Invest. SaHEL Invest was hired by the World Bank to conduct the feasibility study for the establishment of the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority ( PURA) and Mr. Abdoulie M. Touray was appointed as its First Chairman.

6 – SaHel Invest was also hired by the International Trade Centre and they established the Gambia Public Procurement Authority ( GPPA).

7 – Mr. Touray was appointed Chairman of the University of The Gambia Governing Council by former President Yahya A J J Jammeh and it was during his tenure that the Law School and Medical School were established.

8 – Mr. Touray was elected unopposed and served for 2 consecutive terms as President of The Gambia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI).

9 – Mr. Touray served for 4 terms as Secretary General of the Gambia National Olympic Committee (GNOC) and Commonwealth Games Association and was decorated by both International bodies with a Gold Medal and Order of Merit respectively.

10 – Mr. Touray is the founder President of the American Chamber of Commerce and Industry The Gambia and now serves as President Emeritus and Mentor.

11-Mr. Touray is the Founder President of the Gambia China Business Council ( GCBC). 

12 – He sponsored the first ToastMasters International Public Speaking Programme for The Gambia known as Elite ToastMasters.

13 – Mr. Touray served as the first Chairman of Empretec Gambia and the programme trained over 4000 entrepreneurs- Empretec is anchored at the Ministry of Trade and Industry and GIEPA. 

14 – With the advent of the new dispensation and the Presidency of His Excellency Adama Barrow, Mr. Abdoulie M. Touray was appointed Chairman of GRTS and under his Chairmanship, they immediately went Global and GRTS was on satellite under partnership with WAAZI facilitated by the American Chamber of Commerce The Gambia, when Hon Demba Ali Jawo was Minister of Information and Communications and Hon Ebrima Sillah was then Director General of GRTS. 

15 – On the recommendation of the Minister of Tourism and Culture Honourable Hamat N.K Bah, Mr. Abdoulie M. Touray was appointed Chairman of The Gambia Tourism Board in 2019 and the Board successfully developed a Transformative Agenda for the sector dubbed “ Tourism for Positive Change “.

Under Mr. Touray‘s Chairmanship, the Gambia Tourism Board established strong connections with Miami International Airport, Port Miami and Florida International University in the USA aimed at having direct air flights and ocean going vessels from Miami to Banjul taking advantage of the proximity advantage over the Atlantic Ocean.

The Board also signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Florida International University and the University of The Gambia which was initialed by Honourable Hamat N K Bah on behalf of UTG.

16 – The American Chamber of Commerce The Gambia also under Mr. Abdoulie M. Touray‘s Presidency organised the First Gambians in The Diaspora Investment Mission to the USA in Atlanta , Georgia; which was very well attended and resulted in establishing collaborative relationships with the busiest Airport in The World Atlanta Hartsfield Jackson International . Under the leadership of the dearly departed Honourable O A Jallow ( OJ) , former Minister of Agriculture, the American Chamber of Commerce The Gambia under Mr. Abdoulie M. Touray‘s Presidency also established strong relationships with the University of Georgia- School of Agriculture and Extension Services to foster collaboration in Groundnut production and productivity as well as Poultry production , productivity and processing- Georgia being producer of groundnuts ( peanuts) and one of the biggest on poultry production for exports . 

17-SaHel Invest under the leadership of Mr. Touray, has consistently and progressively supported and assisted Gambian Businesses under the Gambian Economic Empowerment MindSet to leverage the country‘s International network which resulted in the following:

US Import Export Bank financing of the first satellite TV project in The Gambia- Premium TV DsTV by Mr Modou Taal .

US Import Export Bank financing of the first bottled water project- Gamwater by Mr Amadou Samba .

Centre for Development of Enterprises of the European Union for the Gamswitch Project by Unique Solutions of Mr Papa Yusupha Njie .

Shelter Afrique financing of Oasis Apartments by Mr Willie Abraham. 

18 – Mr. Abdoulie M. Touray is currently the Chairman of Global Properties powered by Ambassador at Large Mr Saul Frazer who continues to pioneer a number of groundbreaking innovative solutions for property Management in collaboration with Swami India and other partners.

19 – Mr. Touray was appointed as Ambassador for Global Entrepreneurship Network ( GEN) with headquarters in Washington DC – USA – accredited in 200 countries with worldwide membership of over 10 Million Entrepreneurs.

20 – When the National Audit Office ( NAO) was established there is a provision in the NAO Act that a “ Seasoned Economist “ should be appointed as a member of the Board and Mr. Abdoulie M. Touray was recommended by the Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs and eventually got appointed on the Board of Directors of the National Audit Office.

21 – When His Excellency President Barrow officially launched the National Employment Policy developed by the Ministry of Trade , Industry, Regional Integration and Employment with Development Partners and the target was to create 150,000 jobs, Mr. Touray was recommended as Chairman of the National Employment Technical Committee (NETC ) to the President of The Gambia and appointed as the First Chairman of The National Employment Technical Committee ( NETC). 

22 – With the assumption of office of His Excellency President Adama Barrow , Mr. Abdoulie M. Touray deciphered BARROW as ( B- Bringing- A-Accelerated – R-Resources- R- Resourcefulness- O – Opportunity ) for One and All Gambians and those living in The Gambia.


Messenger of HOPE ( Helping Others Prosper Economically).
Always be guided by these principles as prescribed in the Holy scriptures of the QURAN and BIBLE. 
For a fulfilled LIFE:
1 Read and you shall KNOW.
2 Ask and you shall be TOLD 
3 Seek and you shall FIND

For LIVING with Peace of MIND
1 “Be the change you want to see in the World “ Gandhi 
2 “ Ask not what your country can do for you, but, ask what you can do for your country “ JFK
3 “ Do what you can with what you have where you are” Theodore Roosevelt 
4 “ What is right is not expedient, what is expedient is not right, Always do what is RIGHT and Listen to your CONSCIENCE.” AMT ( Baax).

Congratulations Ambassador Baax Touray. Stay Blessed!

One Comment

  1. I am not sure where you’re getting your information, but good topic.