5 July 2010

Gambia: Russian University Awards Doctorate Degree to President Jammeh

The International University of Fundamental Studies (IUFS) in St. Petersburg, Russian Federation, last Friday conferred on the Gambian leader, His Excellency Sheikh Professor Alhaji Dr Yahya Jammeh, a prestigious Grand Doctor of Philosophy Honoris Causa in International Relations and Diplomacy, at a ceremony held at State House in Banjul.

This latest academic laurel for President Jammeh is in recognition of his outstanding service to humanity, his role in fostering peace in the sub-region, as well as his efforts in the improvement of the socio-economic sectors of the country. It comes at a time when the Gambian leader's achievements within and outside the country are being recognised universally.

Speaking at the ceremony, President Jammeh expressed his profound gratitude and sincere appreciation to IUFS for what he described as a surprise."I am short of words because little did I expect that an institution in Russia would give me an award based on what I am doing in this country. I want to assure you that each time I am awarded locally and internationally, it is a victory for the Gambian people. It's an award for the Gambian people including my government, who because of their trust and belief in me as well as support made it possible for me to achieve on their behalf what is being recognised internationally," he said.

President Jammeh, who is a member of the International Parliament for Safety and Peace, used the opportunity to underscore the paramount importance of peace and stability in any meaningful human endeavour.He stressed that lack of peace and stability will make it hard if not impossible for any meaningful development to be achieved, saying that peace is indispensable.Responding to the compliments of the IUFS vice rector, Dr Eugenio Caliquiri, on his medical herbal breakthrough, President Jammeh spoke extensively about the treatment, explaining it is basically for humanitarian purpose.He stated that despite the scepticisms and condemnations he received at the start of his treatment programme; it did not discourage him from pursuing his vision of salvaging humanity from the scourges of complicated diseases that modern medicine has no cure for.

The president also spoke about the potential of herbal medicine, expressing with delight the fact that majority of the patients who had undergone his treatment programme have had their health restored.He emphasised that his treatment is no threat to any commercial firm, and reiterated that it is meant to help humanity. President Jammeh again commended IUFS for the gesture. He also extended commendation and greetings to the president of the International Parliament for Safety and Peace.

He told the officials that The Gambia is a developing country with lots of potentials and urged them to see the country as their second home.Conferring the prestigious Grand Doctorate degree on the president, Dr Eugenio Caliquiri congratulated President Jammeh for this development, underscoring that the Gambian leader is someone who has worked a lot for his country and the sub-region at large.

The IUFS vice rector also stated that the degree awarded to the president is one that is meant for all Gambians including those working with him in making the government a better functioning one.

"The reason why we give to the president this degree is for his work that he has done for Africa including The Gambia to portray peace in this country and in the region. But we also know that the president of The Gambia has done a lot of work in the medical field," Dr Caliquiri stated, while lauding President Jammeh's medical herbal breakthrough.He also thanked President Jammeh for being a member of the International Parliament for Safety and Peace.

Also speaking at the occasion, Dr Lee Kwok Leung, a senior member of the International Parliament for Safety and Peace, also congratulated the president and commended him for his role in fostering peace. He then delved into the operation of the Parliament, which he said, promotes peace across the globe. He stated that the Parliament wants to intensify its efforts in Africa in the promotion of peace and stability given the fact that the continent is one that continues to be plagued with civil wars and violence. He echoed President Jammeh in describing peace as paramount, stating that it is the only solution to have a better world.

Speaking earlier, the secretary general and head of the Civil Service, Dr Njogou Bah congratulated President Jammeh for being recognised for his outstanding services to not only Gambians, but humanity in general. He also thanked IUFS for conferring on President Jammeh the Grand Doctorate of Philosophy Honoris Causa. He described their decision as a well followed one, since it is conferred on a well-deserving and outstanding personality. President Jammeh, SG Bah continued, has made tremendous positive impact on not only Gambians but also humanity in general.

He explained that the president has since his assumption of the mantle of leadership in 1994, vigorously pursued and accomplished several pro-poor development initiatives and projects. SG Bah recalled that after the president recognised the fact that government alone cannot do it all, he established the Jammeh Foundation for Peace as a charitable organisation to complement the efforts of the government in investing into the welfare of humanity, amongst others.

The chief justice of The Gambia, Emmanuel Agim, and the Attorney General and minister of Justice, Edward Gomez, both congratulated President Jammeh for what they described as a well-deserved award. Both men also spoke at length on the extraordinary leadership qualities of the Gambian leader, and the massive transformations and achievements he has registered in the country.

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