FOROYAA Newspaper (Serrekunda)

21 January 2013

Gambia: Japan Inaugurates Project for Gambia Is Good in Siffoe

Concern Universal on behalf of Gambia Good (GiG) held an inauguration ceremony at the Siffoe Kafo Farmyard in Siffoe village in the West Coast Region on the 17 January 2013. The items inaugurated were a new refrigerator for sales and marketing for the purchase of farm produce, 3 (8m x 30m) tunnels, 1 (50m x 8m) tunnels, 1 3 ton Pick-up truck for various farm work.

Mrs. Akiko TAKANO, First Secretary at the Embassy of Japan in the Gambia, expressed her pleasure to attend the delivery of agricultural equipment to Gambia Is Good, Concern Universal.

The Japanese diplomat said it was in February, 2011, that the Ambassador of Japan to the Republic of The Gambia and the General Manager of "Gambia is Good" of Concern Universal signed a grant contract for this project. She said the grant amount is 70,804 (seventy thousand, eight hundred and four Euros) which is equivalent to D2, 539,739 dalasi (two million, five hundred and thirty-nine dalasi), for the purchase a refrigerated truck, a pick-up truck and agricultural tunnels in order to ameliorate the agricultural productivity and quality of products by introducing agricultural tunnels and trucks in the country.

She said with their admiration of the leading role of "Gambia is Good", notably its promoting of sustainable agricultural technologies and techniques among farmers, Japan has decided to assist the organization to help Gambian farmers. She said the farmyard, through a memorandum of understanding with Concern Universal, was developed to promote and demonstrate best practice techniques and a key site for agricultural innovation for local communities.

Mrs. TAKANO said this project is designed to reduce the wastage of agricultural produce. She expressed her conviction that their joint efforts, which symbolizes the friendship between Japan and the Gambia, will contribute to improving the conditions and lives of farmers in country.

This inauguration was the fourth of such intervention implemented through the framework of the Grant Assistance for Grass roots Human Security projects funded by the Government of Japan.

The first intervention was the mango processing training center in Brikama in the partnership with Methodist Mission Agricultural Programme (MMAP) which amounted to 58,637 Euro, equivalent to approximately 2,228,200 dalasi. This funding was for the construction of the center and purchase of food processing equipment. By promoting the processing of mangos, this project entitled "the Project for Construction of Mango Processing Training Center" aims to help local farmers acquire technical processing skills to reduce post-harvest loss and to eventually improve the nutritional condition of people in the Gambia.

The second was the delivery of 2 ambulances to the Gambia Red Cross Society (GRCS). The amount of 66,503 Euros, which is equivalent to approximately 2,377,000 dalasi, was allocated to the project entitled "the Project for the Gambia Red Cross Society Community Ambulance Services." This cooperation enables the recipient organization to provide local community members with a timely and reliable transfer service to medical centers for the benefit of the population of Banjul and its suburbs.

The third was the multipurpose center built at the SOS Children's Village the Gambia in Bakoteh. For the implementation of "the Project for the Construction of SOS Children's Village Bakoteh Multipurpose Center", the organization received 49,067 Euros, equivalent to approximately 1,760,000 dalasi. The completed center is meant to serve not only as a vocational or alphabetization school, but also as a citizenship education school for children and the youth.

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