The Gambian High Commissioner to the United Kingdom and non-resident in Finland, Her Excellency Fatou Bensouda, accompanied by a high-powered delegation, on Wednesday, 27th of September 2023, presented her letters of credence to the president of Finland.
The High Commissioner and delegation met the Gambian population in Finland on the 28th of September 2023, to discuss matters of concern.
In his welcoming remarks , Simon Bojang, Honorary Consul of The Gambia in Finland, expressed delight at the occasion and emphasised the importance of the convergence.
According to him, this is the first time in history that, a High Commissioner met the Gambian population in Finland to dialogue and address pertinent issues affecting them either directly or indirectly.
His Excellency, Suntu Touray, the Deputy High Commissioner at the Gambian High Commissioner in The UK, said Ambassadors and High Commissioners are appointed to serve national interest. Therefore, he went on, their roles are beyond politics and tribal lines.
“They work to protect and promote Gambians irrespective of political affiliation, gender or tribe.“
He further urged Gambians in the diaspora to embrace one another with love, whilst appealing to the elders to constantly counsel the younger ones and involve them in all meaningful activities.
He assured them of the High Commission’s continuous support in addressing their needs.
Speaking on behalf of the youth, Buba Gibba, highlighted the contribution of young people in national development. He stated that Gambian youth in Finland are dedicated and hardworking, thereby engaging in higher education, vocational and skills training and working, paying taxes and sending remittance back home which contributes to the growth of our country’s GDP.
On her part, Her Excellency Fatou Bensouda, the Gambian High Commissioner to The United Kingdom and non-resident in Finland cum former ICC Chief Prosecutor, urged Gambians to love and support one another, while assuring them of her office’s continuous support.
According to her, most of the concerns raised during the meeting were similarly discussed with the Finnish authorities and hopefully they shall be carefully addressed. She promised to hold similar meetings with Gambians abroad to address significant challenges affecting their lives. She called on all Gambians to overlook their differences aside and put The Gambia first.
Sulayman Jawo, a Gambian Student pursuing a Degree Programme in Business Services Solutions and Languages at Haaga-Helia University of Applied Sciences, said Finland has one of the best education systems in the world and there is a need for closer collaboration in which The Gambia stands to benefit immensely.
According to him, the contribution of Gambians in the diaspora to the Gross Domestic Product of our country is huge and therefore, taking their issues with urgency is a prudent move by the High Commission.
He concluded by hailing the efforts of the High Commission and particularly Mr Suntu Touray who is tirelessly working to address their challenges at any given time. He hailed Mr.Touray for making his contacts and social media availability to be reached out to and responds to their needs with urgency. He called on the government to continue to empower Mr. Touray to continue serving their interest.
Editor’s note: Additional reporting by Sulayman Jawo.